There’s a text for that


Nag­ging young adults about ex­ces­sive drink­ing might ac­tu­ally work— that is if the nag­ging is done via text mes­sages.

A study backed by the Emer­gency Medicine Foun­da­tion and a dis­tillers’ in­dus­try group called the Cen­tury Coun­cil found that text mes­sages sent to binge drinkers re­sulted in lower amounts of al­co­hol con­sump­tion, ac­cord­ing to a news re­lease from the EMF.

De­pend­ing on the amount of drink­ing re­ported by a par­tic­i­pant in the study and how he or she re­sponded to the texts, the fol­low-up mes­sages var­i­ously ex­pressed con­cern, of­fered en­cour­age­ment to set goals to re­duce drink­ing and pro­vided pos­i­tive re­in­force­ment and strate­gies for cut­ting down. Af­ter three months, par­tic­i­pants who re­ceived the text-mes­sage in­ter­ven­tions had 3.4 fewer heavy drink­ing days in the pre­ced­ing month and 2.1 fewer drinks per drink­ing day, ac­cord­ing to the EMF. The oth­ers, mean­while, in­creased the amount they drank al­co­hol.

“Be­cause we used an au­to­mated com­puter sys­tem, our in­ter­ven­tion has the abil­ity to pro­vide text mes­sag­ing-based feed­back and sup­port at large scale with min­i­mal cost,” Dr. Brian Suf­fo­letto, as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor of emer­gency medicine at the Univer­sity of Pittsburgh, and leader of the study, said in the re­lease.

Parental nag­ging, which usu­ally is pro­vided for free, was not a part of the study.


Check your texts, dude. They could be telling you to slow down on the drink­ing.

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