Alcohol consumption is a widespread practice in the United States, enjoyed responsibly by millions of Americans each day. However, the rates of excessive drinking vary significantly from city to city.
In this context, a specific metro area in Pennsylvania stands out for having the highest rate of excessive drinking in the state.
Excessive Drinking in Pennsylvania
Excessive drinking, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, encompasses binge drinking and heavy drinking. Binge drinking involves consuming four or more drinks on a single occasion for women and five or more for men. Heavy drinking is characterized by eight or more drinks per week for women and 15 or more for men.
In Pennsylvania, approximately 19.2% of adults report regularly consuming unhealthy amounts of alcohol, slightly higher than the national average of 19.0%. State College, a metro area in Pennsylvania, claims the highest share of the adult population reporting excessive drinking.
State College: Leading in Excessive Drinking
State College, home to Pennsylvania State University, boasts the highest rate of excessive drinking in the state, with about 24.0% of adults in the city consuming unhealthy amounts of alcohol. While this percentage is the highest within the state, it ranks 19th among all 384 metro areas in the U.S.
The Impact of Excessive Drinking
Excessive drinking can result in various adverse effects for individuals and communities. In the short term, it increases the likelihood of violence, risky sexual behavior, alcohol poisoning, and injuries. Potential long-term effects include alcohol dependence, heart disease, liver disease, certain types of cancer, and mental health problems, such as depression.
Roadway fatalities involving alcohol are a common cause of preventable death in the United States, constituting nearly 28% of all fatal car accidents. In Pennsylvania, 26.8% of fatal car accidents involve alcohol.
While the statistics regarding excessive drinking in State College and Pennsylvania as a whole are concerning, they underscore the importance of ongoing efforts to promote responsible drinking and offer support to those grappling with alcohol abuse. It is crucial to remember that while alcohol can be enjoyed responsibly, excessive consumption can result in serious health and societal consequences.