Thanksgiving represents the start of the end-of-year season for many people – when office parties collide with Christmas get-togethers and other holiday events such as NYE – the one thing they all have in common is alcohol.
Think classic eggnog, hot buttered rum, hot toddies, or a twist on the classic martini, peppermintinis. Although drinking isn’t limited to the single end-of-year season, alcohol does hold a particular significance during this period of celebration and indulgence. Could it be that people are more likely to overlook the consequences of excessive alcohol consumption, like the dreaded holiday season hangover?
Detox.net, an online resource for finding drug and alcohol detox centers, carried out a survey of 3,000 drinkers, which uncovered some unhealthy holiday drinking habits across the country: the survey discovered that the average Marylander consumes 27% of their overall alcohol intake for the entire year during the end-of-year holiday season, beginning on Thanksgiving (compared to a national average of 29%). To put it another way, over one-quarter of Marylanders’ overall alcohol consumption for the year happens in just a six-week period.
In a similar way in which professional athletes prepare for a big game, 22%of drinkers say they mentally prepare themselves prior to the drinking season (the period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Eve). A further 14%also say they physically prepare themselves for this season by either abstaining from alcohol for a few weeks or months beforehand or adopting a healthier diet and lifestyle in preparation for overindulging during the holidays. Given that 27% of drinkers said they will drink more this upcoming festive season as compared to previous years due to the lifting of lockdown restrictions, maybe a detox of sorts is due.
Finally, the survey revealed that nearly 1 in 5 admit they become concerned about their health ahead of this heavy drinking period, which is an indication that many are aware of the various risks and dangers associated with excessive alcohol consumption in such a short period of time.
But overindulgence isn’t the only concern for drinkers this upcoming festive season. A separate survey by DrugAbuse.com found that more than a third (34%) of women said they’ve actively stayed sober on a night out, or stayed in altogether, out of fear of potentially having their drink spiked. End-of-year office and Christmas parties notoriously feature an abundance of alcohol and for many women, this is yet another time of the year that serves as a real risk of drink spiking, especially in situations where not everyone is well-acquainted. While this time of year should be focused on celebration, many women feel they still have to prioritize their own health and safety.