Drinkers in self-denial
NEW research shows many Australian drinkers classify themselves as low risk drinkers despite drinking at high risk levels and may be unaware of their risk of alcohol-related harm.
Led by Professor Simone Pettigrew at Curtin University, the research asked Australians to selfidentify with various drinker prototypes to determine which of these were associated with risky drinking and perceptions of harm.
The research showed that 45 per cent of people classified themselves as social drinkers, while 24 per cent described themselves as occasional drinkers, 23 per cent as light drinkers and 17 per cent as heavy drinkers.
Only 7 per cent classified themselves as binge drinkers, despite 75 per cent drinking at levels considered risky for single occasion alcohol use.
Among social drinkers, 41 per cent believed their alcohol use to be harmful, but 90 per cent reported drinking at high risk levels. Among those identifying as light and occasional drinkers, more than half reported high-risk levels of consumption.