Association between Socio-Demographics and Alcohol Dependence among Individuals Living in an Indian Setting

  •  B. Vignesh    
  •  Awnish Singh    
  •  S. Mohan    
  •  Shruti Murthy    
  •  Ashish Joshi    


Background: Alcohol use is on the rise worldwide and urgent steps are required to curb this growing burden of alcohol consumption. Alcohol drinking leads to serious social, physical and mental consequences.

Objective: The objective of this pilot study is to examine association between socio-demographics and severity of alcohol dependence among individuals obtaining treatment at alcohol de-addiction center.

Methods: This pilot cross sectional study was conducted in September 2013 in South India. A convenient sample of 100 participants was enrolled. Individuals aged 30 years and above, receiving treatment from de-addiction center and providing written informed consent were eligible for the study. A modified version of previously validated questionnaires was used for gathering information on socio-demographic characteristics, severity of alcohol dependence (using Alcohol Dependent Scale [ADS] and Short Alcohol Dependence Data questionnaire [SADD]), motivational incentives for alcohol quitting and challenges faced while quitting alcohol.

Results: All participants were males with mean age of 43 years (SD = 6.5 years). Significant association was seen between ADS and annual income (p = 0.001), education (p = 0.001), occupation (p < 0.0001) and work timing (p < 0.0001). Similar results were seen with SADD scores. Family support (100%) and health (60%) were reported to be the most important motivating factors for quitting alcohol.

Discussion: Results showed an urgent need of interventions that are family centered and focus on unskilled, less educated individuals having high work stress. Public health interventions should not only be home based, but should also include worksite awareness initiatives. A national policy is needed to promote alcohol quitting and to bring awareness regarding the consequences of alcohol consumption on individual’s life.

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