Here’s how Covid-19 altered drinking habits among young adults

Here's how Covid-19 altered drinking habits among young adults WASHINGTON: With the implementation of several restrictions, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has somehow managed to alter the drinking habits among young adults, suggested a new study.
According to the new study, published in the journal ‘Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research’, alcohol consumption was reduced among young adults during the initial phase of coronavirus.
In a sample of nearly 500 young adults ranging in age from 18 to 25, researchers saw a reduction in problematic drinking and alcohol consequences for both men and women.
Covid curbs on socialisation played a major role in the reduction of risky alcohol use in this age group. In fact, the shutdown of bars and cafes has decreased binge drinking.
“The study participants were young people, who typically drink in social settings. If you take away bars, restaurants, and group events, like parties, it’s not surprising that binge drinking in this group goes down too,” Meenu Minhas, lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow at the Peter Boris Centre for Addictions Research, said.
However, the study has found increased rates of depression among women.
Among study participants, women showed a substantial increase in the odds of meeting the threshold for clinical depression from pre- to intra-pandemic. A similar effect was not found in male participants.
“We saw high levels of pandemic-related stress, irritability, sadness, which unfortunately were felt more strongly by females,” Minhas added.
Senior author James MacKillop emphasised how social interactions used to act as stress busters for people.
“Although certain public health measures were important in controlling the spread of the virus, the benefits of social support and interaction, which often act as buffers against the effects of stress, have also been reduced due to the pandemic,” MacKillop observed.

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