Elderly putting health at risk through booze, find researchers

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ELDERLY people are drinking in excessive volumes which are hazardous to health, according to researchers on Wearside.

Experts from Sunderland University worked alongside colleagues from Newcastle to look at why pensioners continue to drink harmful amounts and their attitudes to alcohol.

They have now called for changes to the recommended safe levels of drinking for people aged over 65, and for a special alcohol service to be set up for those who are older.

Their research has found that many do not realise they are heavy drinkers if they do not see themselves dependent.

The study, organised through Fuse, the Centre for Translational Research in Public Health, focused on groups with 53 men and women aged between 65 and 90.

One of the women interviewed said she drank a bottle of wine a day, which equals 63 units a week, but believed she did not have a problem with alcohol because it did not have a big effect on her.