St. Patty’s Day & Substance Abuse: What You Should Know

It’s the one day of the year that everyone is at least a little bit Irish. Unfortunately, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations sometimes highlight substance abuse issues.

While the holiday is a great excuse to throw a party, too many people with substance abuse problems go all in with a night of binge drinking. So what is binge drinking, and what’s the big deal?


Binge Drinking May Signal a Substance Abuse Problem

Binge drinking is often categorized as having four to five drinks in a two hour period. While indulging in once-a-year binge drinking doesn’t necessarily mean that a substance abuse problem exists, it is still dangerous. Research suggests that all binge drinking causes brain damage, and one of the most frightening aspects of this substance abuse issue is that it sometimes leads to episodes of drinking and driving.

The Dangers of Drunk Driving

Every year, substance abuse issues are highlighted on St. Patrick’s Day. Statistics show that there were 275 drunk-driving casualties on this day between 2009 and 2013. This means that a person loses their life due to drunk driving on St. Patrick’s Day every 46 minutes. Moreover, 75 percent of drivers in DUI crashes on this holiday are tested at twice the legal limit.

St. Patrick's Day background with Irish flag horseshoe pot of gold coins Leprechaun hat and other traditional symbols. Conceptual illustration of a flat style on the St. Patricks day theme

A Day for Massive Beer Sales

Beer brewers earn nearly $245 million from St. Patrick’s Day sales alone. However, statistics show that approximately one in six American adults binge drink four times per month. This signals a serious substance abuse problem that should be addressed. Anyone who experiences memory loss, makes risky decisions or allows responsibilities to fall by the wayside may be dealing with a substance abuse issue.

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