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Subst Abus. 2001 Mar;22(1):69-85.

Gender Differences in Drinking Patterns in Nine European Countries: Descriptive Findings.

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Alcohol and Drug Research, National Research and Development Centre for Welfare and Health, P.O. Box 220, FIN-00531 Helsinki, Finland.


Gender differences in drinking patterns in nine European countries (the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Scotland, Sweden, and Switzerland) were examined using data from surveys conducted in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Drinking patterns were analyzed with regard to sociodemographic variables such as age, education, employment, marital status, and parenthood. Age was closely related to drinking in every society, but the patterns were different in different societies. Women with higher education tended to consume more alcohol than women with lower education in many societies, whereas a similar pattern was not found among men. Unemployment seemed to be more strongly related to women's drinking than to that of men. Divorced men consistently consumed the most alcohol in every country. Parenthood was profoundly and consistently associated across societies with women's monthly consumption and prevalence of heavy drinking.

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