Boots & Sabers

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0643, 30 Aug 17

Falling Down Drunk

Huh. Wisconsin’s drinking culture strikes again.

Wisconsin’s elderly death rate from falls is twice the national average. While few public health experts offer explanations, some are now linking the falls to elevated binge drinking rates among elderly residents. They are a population that is now drinking more than any other point in the past decade.

“Alcohol is hitting you harder and your balance is a little off because you’re older and your bones are more brittle,” said Julia Sherman, chair of the alcohol policy project at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “You add that all together and the danger is obvious in hindsight.”

Falls that involve alcohol killed more than 400 of Wisconsin’s senior citizens in 2016, a dramatic increase that some experts are calling an emerging health crisis for Wisconsin’s booming 65-and-older population.

Alcohol-attributed falls have resulted in more lives lost than drunk driving every year since 2008. Since that year, alcohol-related falls resulted in 2,784 deaths while drunk driving deaths claimed 1,820 lives, according to XXXXXX.


0643, 30 August 2017


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