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Study: Finns unfazed by summer binge drinking

In spite of evidence to the contrary, a new survey shows that a majority of Finns don’t believe that their relatives’ wellbeing is compromised by increased alcohol consumption during the summer.

Oluttuoppeja pöydällä.
Image: Yle

The survey on the website set out to determine whether respondents were concerned about their relatives’ summer binge drinking. Sixty percent of them said they weren’t. And more than half of them didn’t believe that their family members drank more during the summer.

When asked whether they thought that their family members’ wellbeing suffered as a result of over-indulgence in the summer months, 70 percent of respondents responded negatively. Just 18 percent of those surveyed felt that their family members’ health was at risk due to binge drinking during the warm summer weeks.

Finns believe their alcohol consumption is within normal limits

A large proportion of the survey respondents thought that Finns did not over indulge in alcohol during summer. Roughly eighty percent of them said that Finns' annual aocohol consumption was within normal limits, while just 4 percent thought that Finns hit the bottle too hard.

The study was commissioned by the medical company Actavis. Marketing Manager Heidi Aittoniemi found the results surprising.

”The Valvira stastistics show that alcohol consumption rises significantly during the summer months,” she said.

The National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira) is responsible for the implementation of the Alcohol Act in Finland.

Medical pharamacologist Katja-Anneli Wathén also confirmed that binge drinking is a feature of the Finnish summer and that it’s seen in drug clinics.

”We see a steep increase in demand for detoxification care before the end of the summer. More than the usual number of working age and able-bodied individuals turn up for treatment,” she noted.

Carefree attitude to the problem

Aittoniemi points out that a blithe attitude to our own alcohol consumption or that of our loved ones could feed into a large societal problem.

“The nunbers show that alcohol is already the most common cause of death among working age Finns,” she warned.

The survey interviewed 1482 Finns, of whom 87 percent were women and 13 percent were men. Most respondents (95 percent) were between the ages of 25 and 64.

Sources: YLE

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