A NEW survey has found that two-thirds of men have turned to alcohol to cope with loneliness during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Drinkaware carried out the Behaviour and Attitudes survey of 1,015 adults and the results show that 66 per cent of men say they use alcohol to help cope. That is compared to 55 per cent of women.
Drinkaware is the national charity working to prevent and reduce alcohol misuse in Ireland.
Men experience a significant burden of alcohol-related harm in Ireland and globally.
Figures from the Health Research Board show that one in four deaths of young men in Ireland aged 15-39 is due to alcohol.
Poor mental health already disproportionately affects men, and alcohol’s significant impact on mental health is widely acknowledged by the WHO and HSE.
The survey found that 57 per cent of men in Ireland are drinking on a weekly basis, compared to 48 per cent of women, while 40 per cent of men report drinking at home alone, compared to 32 per cent of women.
Men are more than twice as likely to report binge drinking four or more times in those 30 days (21 per cent), compared to 10 per cent of women.
“The data tells the story of stark gender divide regarding alcohol consumption in Ireland,” said Sheena Horgan, Drinkaware CEO.
“Irish men are clearly using alcohol as a way to cope with the anxiety, loneliness and boredom of Covid-19.
“Men already fared worse in terms of frequency and volume of drinking. Now they are exhibiting consistently hazardous and potentially harmful drinking habits. “