Study shows number of excessive drinkers in Mid-Michigan - WNEM TV 5

Study shows number of excessive drinkers in Mid-Michigan

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A study of people's drinking habits sheds new light on the number of excessive drinkers in Mid-Michigan.

The numbers from the new report from the Centers for Disease Control might sound alarming as it reveals Mid-Michigan is home to some of the state's most excessive alcoholic drinkers.

According to a county by county list compiled by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Isabella County ranks number one with 23 percent of residents reporting binge or heavy drinking in the last month.

Data shows excessive drinking ranks lower in Bay County with 21 percent of residents, Midland County with 20 percent and Saginaw and Genesee counties tied with 18 percent.

The CDC defines excessive drinking as drinking five or more drinks on occasion for men or four or more drinks on occasion for women.

Heavy drinking is having 15 or more drinks per week for men or eight or more drinks per week for women.

"Too much is really personal. It's about when your life becomes really out of control," said Nick McKenzie, therapist at Saginaw Psychological Services.

McKenzie said the line between drinking and drinking too much depends on the person.

"One beer might be good for one person and one might not be good for another. Your ability to manage your life has a lot to do with when things are too much," McKenzie said.

He said if you are developing a problem the people around you will usually be the first to notice changes in your behavior. He said the best judge of possible problems is you.

"So when you're seeking alcohol a lot of the time, like you spend most of your time looking for alcohol or going to establishments that serve alcohol, that's usually a sign that it's too much," McKenzie said.

He said if you or someone you know is developing a problem you can always dial 211 or visit their offices at the Saginaw Psychological Services.

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