Slowing the Tide of Alcohol Use Disorders

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Alcohol use disorders (AUDs)—a spectrum including at-risk drinking, alcohol abuse, dependence, and addiction—is a highly prevalent problem worldwide with a substantial economic impact. The toll of alcohol on individual health and healthcare systems is devastating. Alcohol is estimated to be the fifth leading risk factor for global disabilityadjusted life years. Tackling the problem of AUD requires a comprehensive strategy that includes solid action on price, availability, and marketing of alcohol. Restricting or banning alcohol advertising may reduce exposure to the risk posed by alcohol at the individual and general population level. Warning labels about the cancer risks associated with drinking have a high degree of public support and may be an inexpensive and acceptable way to educate the public. Religiosity may reduce risk behaviors and contribute to health decision making related to alcohol use.

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