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Surge in alcohol sales concerning

Photo: Surge in alcohol sales concerning
The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is concerned by the surge in alcohol sales amid the coronavirus pandemic, fearing it may lead to increased domestic violence, accidents and injuries.

Commonwealth Bank data shows alcohol sales have risen by 20.4% compared to this time last year, confirming reports of people stockpiling and panic buying alcoholic products.  

 Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM, said she is worried there will be increases in the number of people consuming alcohol in their homes as a coping mechanism in this uncertain time. 

 “The Alcohol and Drug Foundation acknowledges the strain being placed on individuals and families, as the impact of coronavirus unfolds,” Dr Lalor remarked. 

 “It’s important that people take steps to maintain their health and wellbeing and reduce the risk of alcohol-related harms,” Dr Lalor added.
The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s advice includes:

  • Avoid using alcohol as a mechanism to relieve stress and/or anxiety, as alcohol can heighten these feelings. Try alternative tactics such as listening to music, exercising, reading and connecting with loved ones. If you are still feeling stressed or anxious, seek advice from a health professional.
     
  • Model responsible drinking around children, including limiting consumption, avoiding intoxication, not drinking and driving, and showing you can deal with stress in healthier ways. 
     
  • Stick to the national guidelines. The National Health and Medical Research Centre recommends drinking no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion to avoid injury or illness, and no more than two standard drinks on any day to reduce the lifetime risk of alcohol-related injury and disease such as cancer.
     
  • Don’t mix alcohol with other drugs, including medications.

“We are urging people to be mindful not to encourage the normalisation of alcohol consumption, especially around children,” Dr Lalor said.

“There are no health benefits of alcohol. Consumption can lead to accidents, injuries and other serious health impacts such as dependence, liver damage and cancer,” Dr Lalor said.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.

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