Adults turn to alcohol to deal with mental health issues

Many adults in the UK are using alcohol to deal with mental health problems, according to a study published today.

Forty per cent of those polled in the Mental Health Foundation survey said alcohol makes them feel less anxious and 26 per cent claim it reduces their depression.

But the approach is likely to be counterproductive as regular drinking changes the chemistry of the brain, making people more likely to suffer anxiety and depression, the study finds.

It reveals significant connections between reported alcohol use and depressive symptoms and claims 65 per cent of suicides have been linked to excessive drinking.

The foundation’s chief executive Andrew McCulloch said: “The research confirms our worries that people are drinking to cope with emotions and situations they can’t otherwise manage, to deal with feelings of anxiety and depression.”

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