The Cost of Intoxication
It’s easy to forget the words ‘drink responsibly’ while enjoying a night out on the town – especially when you’re struggling to remember much else, like your name or where you live. To many Americans adults, this may sound familiar and somewhat amusing, but in fact, consuming large quantities of alcohol can be extremely dangerous and result in memory lapse, blackouts and loss of important personal possessions, such as your wallet, cell phone, ID and house keys.
Clinical and support service provider for addiction and mental health disorders, Laguna Treatment, conducted a survey of 3,000 drinkers in the U.S. to investigate the cost they incur of lost personal possessions as a result of drinking too much alcohol. It was found that the average American drinker lost $192.55 in personal possessions over the past year – roughly the cost of 128 beers!*
More locally, the survey revealed that Bay Stater drinkers have incurred an average loss of $185.
However, it is North Dakotans who have suffered the greatest financial pain (and subsequent hangovers), as they have lost the most in the country over the past calendar year – to the value of $380.00. Could this have something to do with the fact that The Peace Garden State has the highest binge drinking statistics** in the country?
The research also found that 32% of drinkers admit they are most likely to lose their cell phone on a night out. Perhaps this has something to do with the abundance of drunken selfies snapped throughout the night… This was followed by keys (29%), cash (17%), jewelry (15%) and wallets (7%).
Broken down by gender, 37% of women admit their cell phone is most likely to go missing after a big night, followed by keys (31%), jewelry (16%), cash (13%) and wallet (3%). Men, however, say they are most likely to lose their keys (28%) – this was followed by their cell phone (26%), cash (22%), jewelry (12%) and wallet (12%).
Additionally, 4% of drinkers admit they have actually forgotten where they live after enjoying a night out, and almost 1 in 10 (8%) say they have lost items of sentimental value while drunk.
7% admit they have used social media to piece together what happened on a boozy night out. Thank goodness for Instagram stories!
Hangover guilt? A quarter (25%) of respondents said they feel regret and shame when they wake up the next day with a hangover.
More than 1 in 10 drinkers (14%) say they have lost friendships as a result of things that have happened while drunk, with men (22%) agreeing with this statement more than women (7%).
True friendship? Encouragingly, 74% of respondents say they would hide a friend’s car keys if they were about to drink drive.
Lastly, 40% of drinkers believe it is their friend’s responsibility to look after them if they have had too much to drink. Men felt more strongly about this (47%) than women (33%). Is boozy babysitting billed by the hour?
‘Warning labels are not put there simply for show – exercise caution when choosing to consume alcohol and ensure you are in a safe environment surrounded by people you trust. Drinking too much can result in serious danger to your safety as you are more likely to misplace possessions containing your personal information, such as your phone or wallet.’ Says Dr Paul Little, Medical Director for Laguna Treatment. ‘If you know of anyone who you suspect might have a substance addiction, it is important to refer them to a treatment facility that offers emotional and clinical support on the path to recovery.’
(press release sent ton WSBS from Laguna Treatment for online and on-air use)