Alcohol consumption can have adverse social and economic effects on the individual drinker, the drinker’s immediate environment and society as a whole

Alcohol addiction has caused many families, relationships, and marriages to break apart. In many cases it has left a person emotionally broken. There is no doubt that alcohol addiction can be an absolute nightmare for the sufferer, but also for the people around them.

However, alcohol also has a profound socio-economic effect. In this blog, we will be looking at the effect of alcohol abuse in society. Whether it is a small community or the world economy – alcoholism has a huge effect on all of us.

It’s important to understand how alcohol can affect people and the way they relate to others. Doing so will help you reduce the risk of beer, wine, or liquor degrading the health of your relationship. 


Alcohol Addiction and the Economy

The economy takes large hits every year, solely through alcohol abuse. An often-used argument is the heavy taxes levied on alcohol makes up for the direct and indirect costs of alcohol in society. However, that is incorrect.

On average, the government takes about £11 billion in taxes, whilst the direct costs of alcohol abuse through lost working hours is already between £8-11 billion– that is essentially the amount of working hours lost by people of a working age, whether that is due to general unsuitability to work or to the fact that alcohol abuse has taken its toll and lead to death or severe injury.

Sickness and absence days of problematic drinkers also add to that amount of money lost.

Outside of the work place, alcohol addiction also has an effect on the economy. Sickness and alcohol related illnesses have cost billions to the NHS each year, all costs that could have been avoided. In total, every year there is £25 billion lost on alcohol and alcohol related illnesses.


Alcohol Addiction and Future Generations

Alcohol addiction has a direct effect on the offspring of the addict. One in five kids in the United Kingdom has a parent that drinks too much. A lack of a correct upbringing due to alcohol abuse leads to many problems for the children of addicts.

From the perspective of the child, having an alcoholic parent will increase the chances of the child becoming an addict themselves. To add to that, psychologically, a child of an addict also suffers.

They tend to develop coping problems and self confidence issues. It is also proven that these children are more likely to suffer from mental health issues in adulthood. Anxiety and depression are prevalent in young adults who have parents who are alcoholics.

Outside of the mental effect of having parents with alcoholics, education and finance- wise, children of alcoholics also fall behind on their counterparts who’s parents did not have an alcohol abuse problem.

For many kids of alcoholics, financial support is often less due to the fact that the parent spends more money on alcohol, or is unable to work due to alcohol abuse.

Children who do not receive support to pay for costs of school often will not be able to afford tertiary education. This will likely lead to less highly paid jobs in the future, and less money to invest into the future into their children.

All in all, children of alcoholics tend to lead less happy and fulfilling lives.


Alcohol Addiction and Relationships

The constant drinking can have a huge impact on household relationships as well as financially with having an income with supporting their family. Substance use affects the body and the mind, and the person suffering is often the last to realize the extent of the damage being done.

Whether it be a partner, family, or friend, losing a potential relationship with someone can have a huge impact on not just them but yourself as well.

Are you noticing to forget important dates because of drinking? Do you tend to cancel or put certain plan off as a result of drinking? These are questions you should ask yourself if you are becoming concerned.


Alcohol Addiction and The Workplace

Addiction affects 1 in 10 people worldwide. Given that the majority of people with a drug or alcohol problem are in full time employment, its known that drinking in the workplace is a real issue.

More than 25 million adults in England regularly drink alcohol. Statistically, drinkers are more likely to be employed than non drinkers. It’s known that 40% of employers mention alcohol as a significant cause of low productivity and 27% of people drink more due to the stress of the workplace. 

The occupations most affected by alcohol use are:

  • – Bartenders – 2.33 times more likely than average to die from an alcohol-related deaths
  • – Roofers – 1.87 times more likely
  • – Painters – 1.85 times more likely
  • – Cooks – 1.77 times more likely
  • – Construction laborers – 1.72 times more likely


How You Can Break the Circle.

If you are addicted to alcohol, and think that you’re addiction does not impact anyone but you, you are incorrect. Your family, partner and children suffer from your addiction to alcohol – not only now, but in the future as well. So does wider society.

It is important to know however, that the main motivation to get clean should be about yourself first. We can help you. We offer alcohol rehab at our treatment centre in Blackpool – with services tailored to your needs and wants. We can help you gain freedom from alcohol addiction.

Get in touch with Ocean Recovery Centre today for more information.



What problems does alcohol cause in society?

Drinking alcohol can cause a lot health problems including mental and behavioural problems, including major noncommunicable diseases such as liver cirrhosis, cancer and cardiovascular disease. Drinking alcohol can have a long term and short term effects, which can have an impact on hospital emissions and the health services in general.


What is the cost of alcohol abuse on society?

Approximately 13.9% of people in the United States will meet the criteria for severe alcohol use disorder in their lifetimes and alcohol is involved in more than 88,000 deaths per year. The real-world impact of alcohol abuse reaches far beyond the financial costs. When a loved one has a problem with alcohol, it can affect their marriage and their extended family.



John Gillen - Author - Last updated: January 13, 2022

John is one UK’s leading professionals in the addiction recovery industry. Pioneering new treatment techniques such as NAD+ and ongoing research into new therapy techniques such as systematic laser therapy, John is committed to providing the very best treatment for people throughout the UK and Europe. During his extremely busy schedule, John likes to regularly update our blog section with the latest news and trends in the industry to keep visitors to our site as well informed as possible on everything related to addiction treatment.