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Alcohol and alcoholism in Poland. Nearly 8 percent of Poles drink every day. After the pandemic, drinking all day is a novelty

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Total alcohol consumption in Poland has decreased, but unfortunately there are more binge drinkers. The pandemic and turbulent times have their share of this, but they are also excuses that drinkers can find much more. Experts are sounding the alarm – over 80 percent of adult Poles reach for a glass, and as many as six million citizens of our country suffer from drinking problems or its consequences. Material of the magazine “Polska i Świat”.

Poland has been chasing, with greater and lesser successes, Western countries for years. However, in one area, the direction has changed. The pandemic turned the world upside down and affected almost every element of life, including the way and amount of alcohol drunk by Poles.

During the two years of the pandemic, the amount of alcohol consumed per capita has fallen slightly, but unfortunately the way we drink and how often we drink is worrying. – The habits of some drinkers have changed alarmingly. At the moment, almost eight percent of those who admit to drinking drink every day. Andrzej Mariusz Fal, president of the board of the Polish Society of Public Health. “Among those who drink daily, there are many who drink risky and unhealthy,” he adds.

“30 years of work gone to hell”

According to the research, the novelty is drinking all day – it contributed to this remote work and free access to a home bar. We reach for stronger and stronger alcohols more often. This is an increase not seen in 30 years.

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This is how we got to the situation in 1993. So to put it simply: 30 years of work and care for us to drink less went to hell – says the former head of the State Agency for Solving Alcohol Problems, Krzysztof Brzózka.

There are plenty of people who drink to feel better. But there are also those who drink to cut themselves off, says Dr. Bohdan T. Woronowicz, a psychiatrist and addiction psychotherapy supervisor.

Restrictions, a sense of danger, confinement at home, remote work – it was a pandemic everyday life. Often reaching for a glass turned out to be a temporary solution to problems that did not change after the pandemic. Helping such people is the everyday life of addiction experts.

Over 80 percent of adult Poles drink alcohol

– A lot of people came who looked into the glass, but during the lockdown many of them crossed the border between health and disease – believes Dr. Bohdan T. Woronowicz.

– Suddenly the problems disappear. Nice, no problems, it’s wonderful. But suddenly alcohol stops working in our district nervous system and there is pain, fear, despair, helplessness, helplessness, shame again. So what? We reach for alcohol again and the circle closes – explains Sławomir Grzegorek, an addiction prevention specialist.

Nearly 8 percent of Poles consume alcohol every day.Shutterstock

Over 80 percent of adult Poles reach for a glass. The others declare abstinence for at least a year – these are two camps where alcohol radicalization occurs.

– Diehards are even more “ardent”, and abstainers have also increased by this fraction of a percent, which is a good signal, but not equivalent to a bad signal on the other hand – says prof. Andrzej Mariusz Fal.

Experts warn against excessive alcohol consumption

The point at which alcohol becomes a problem is highly subjective. The main warning sign should be feeling out of control. “If I planned to drink one or two glasses, and I drink twelve, then that control has been broken.” The basic symptom of addiction is impaired control over drinking, says Dr. Bohdan T. Woronowicz.

Krzysztof Brzózka points out that every fifth Pole “functions in the environment of addicted people or people who drink excessively and harmfully”. People who experience problems with alcohol or their loved ones should seek help.

Every day from Between 8am and 10pm, you can contact Alcoholics Anonymous (Alcoholics Anonymous).801 033 242), from 14 to 18 under the number of the Association “MONAR” (574 734 814), as well as under the 24-hour blue line (800 120 002).

Author:Maciej Zalewski, asty/adso

Main photo source: Lublin police



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