The largest change was in the most severe alcohol use category. The number of people who had received a diagnosis of alcoholism over the period of the two studies shot up by 49%, affecting 12.7% of the total population. This means 1 in 8 Americans received a diagnosis of alcoholism in the year before the latest survey.
“The increases were unprecedented relative to the past two decades,” study author Bridget Grant of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Rockville, told IBTimes UK.
Despite its prevalence, Americans are not sufficiently aware of the alcoholism crisis.
“The increases in alcohol related outcomes may have been overshadowed by increases in less prevalent drugs like marijuana and opioids, although all increases in alcohol and other substances are important.”