UK Binge Drinking Statistics

Published by John Gillen | Last updated: 30th January 2023 | All Sources

Binge drinking here in the UK is a significant problem. Concerningly, excessive drinking habits are normalised within our drinking culture, which is worrying for those with pre-existing weaknesses, leaning toward addictive traits, or those with existing addiction diagnoses.

Through such worry, it’s important that we keep an eye on how drinking habits are changing, which can be seen through UK binge drinking statistics.

Providing an overview of how prevalent alcohol consumption is, below is a breakdown considering some of the most recent statistics on binge drinking, along with addiction rates. While binge drinking is different from the characteristics of alcoholism, ranking closely, it is important that rates of potential development are considered.

While looking at UK binge drinking statistics is beneficial, we must however remember that every individual, acting as a statistic are different. Through that, some will rely on alcohol more than others, each will have unique side effects and causations, and each will require varying levels of support.

If you’re personally struggling with binge drinking, it’s time to consider your own habits, rather than the average drinking culture that we find here in Britain. If you are finding it hard to stop or reduce your alcohol consumption, it’s time to speak to our team here at Cassiobury Court.


UK binge drinking culture

As a nation, binge drinking has unfortunately always been a problem, especially in recent years. While alcohol prices have increased by 28% over the last 10 years, we’re still finding many individuals relying on alcohol as a suppressant, as a form of escapism, and as a way to relax.

Through such behaviours, a strong drinking culture of binge drinking has developed in the UK, which normalises heavy drinking sessions.

The behaviours of those who binge drink are different from those who carry an addiction diagnosis. Binge drinking is recognised as a pattern of excessive alcohol consumption, which is craved at the moment.

Those who binge on alcohol will usually lack physical and psychological cravings, outside of intended exposure. This is a significant difference between those who binge drink and those who ultimately rely on alcohol to function, known as an addiction.

However, the focus must be placed on the dangers of binge drinking on health, along with how ongoing excessive exposure to alcohol can result in an addiction. There is a blurred line around binge drinking, as it’s accepted as normal behaviour.

Yet through that acceptance, if addictive traits do arise, many individuals may also believe that this experience is acceptable, enabling the formation of an addiction.

Differentiating binge drinking and addiction is important, yet as of 2017/2018, a concerning number of 586,780 individuals were dependent on alcohol, showcasing how UK binge drinking statistics could be even greater.


UK binge drinking statistics

Considering binge drinking habits over the last few years, here’s a breakdown of how drinking habits have changed, along with statistics on health and death-related numbers, surrounding excessive alcohol misuse.


Binge drinking

Previous research has found that 24% of adults within England binge drink regularly, where consumption guidelines are overlooked. For men, over 8 units per day is the average, and 6 units for women, ranking beyond safe guidelines.

Through 2011 statistics of UK binge drinking, consuming up to 6 units defined drinking habits. Yet, just under 10 years on, that definition has slightly changed, especially across the heaviest of drinking days.


Health statistics

Concerningly, alcohol is found to be a contributing and influential factor of 60 different health conditions, which is worrying for those who do abuse and binge drink. In England, 1.26 million hospital admissions in 2018/19 were alcohol-related, in Scotland, 38,000 admissions were found, and in Wales, 54,900 admissions.

In relation to UK binge drinking statistics, this shows how influential consistent alcohol exposure can be to one’s health, even if only acting as a contributing factor.


Alcohol-related deaths

While binge drinking is defined as less harmful in comparison to longstanding alcoholism, alcohol exposure, which is seen through binge drinking does contribute to alcohol-related deaths.

Within the first 9 months of 2019, 4,689 deaths were related to binge drinking. Yet, in 2020, a 16.4% increase was found, again across the first 9 months, resulting in 5,460 alcohol-related deaths.

Although not all deaths are in correspondence with binge drinking behaviours as such, they are related to the consumption of alcohol, which can be enabled further through binge drinking. This is concerning to see, as while binge drinking statistics in the UK have stabilised across years, alcohol-related deaths have increased.


Working through alcohol abuse

Alcohol abuse can quickly follow the behaviours of binge drinking. While they are different, as binge drinking is commonly a conscious act, while alcohol abuse is an uncontrollable brain condition, ongoing exposure to the addictive traits of alcohol can develop into an addiction.

Concerningly, previous research has shared how rejected treatment is, where only 18% of individuals, suffering from excessive alcohol consumption previously considered professional support.

We at Cassiobury Court hope that this is different for you, by visiting our website. If your binge drinking is getting out of control, steps can be communicated to help you reduce your consumption levels.

If you’re worried that you’re becoming reliant on alcohol, we again can help you through a unique range of steps to reduce and diminish your attachment to alcohol. Rehabilitation services are available, no matter how moderate or severe your drinking habits may be.

UK binge drinking statistics will continue to fluctuate. They may increase or decrease over the coming years, alcohol-related deaths may reduce once again, and the average binge drinking consumption levels, when considering units may change.

Yet unfortunately, what will likely remain in our drinking culture here in the UK, our acceptance of excessive alcohol consumption, and the behaviour of binge drinking. You can however change this likelihood for yourself by considering professional support to alleviate your use of alcohol, no matter the reason.

For more information on how we can help you, or for tips to reduce binge drinking habits, reach out today.

John Gillen

John Gillen - Author Last updated: 30th January 2023

John Gillen is a leading addiction treatment expert with over 15 years of experience providing evidence-based treatment methods for individuals throughout the UK. John also co-authors the book, The Secret Disease of Addiction, which delves into how the addictive mind works and what treatment techniques work best.