German teenagers drinking less alcohol: Study

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German teenagers drinking less alcohol: Study
Drinking has declined among teenagers in Germany. Image: DPA

A study into the drinking habits of young people has revealed a continued decrease in regular alcohol consumption among German teenagers.


But it also showed binge drinking was on the rise among young adults.

The research was carried out to get an idea of younger people’s drinking habits, both in terms of how often they drink - and how much. 

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Under one in ten (8.7 percent) Germans aged between 12 and 17 drank alcohol at least once a week. 

This is a significant decline from previous reports. A study conducted on the same age group in 2004 showed that one in five (21.2 percent) drank at least once per week. 

The findings indicate that public awareness campaigns about the dangers of alcohol may be paying off, while they also highlight a tendency among younger generations to be more health conscious than their forebears. 

Binge drinking needs to be tackled

The news was less good for Germans aged between 18 and 25 however, with more than a third (37.8 percent) drinking ‘to intoxication’ at least once in the past month before the survey was taken. 

Marlene Mortler of the centre-right CSU, who is the Federal Government’s Drug Commissioner, told DPA that the findings were welcome, while also indicating that more needed to be done to tackle binge drinking. 

“Reaching adulthood shouldn’t mean that all of the sudden it’s alright to drink too much alcohol”, she said. 

Mortler said education campaigns focusing on a “conscious approach to life” could be used to tackle the issue. 

The study, completed by the Federal Centre for Health Education, was conducted on 7,000 young Germans throughout 2018. 

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