Women and Alcohol Abuse

  • Barbara S. McCrady
Part of the Women in Context: Development and Stresses book series (WICO)


Alcohol and drug abuse are becoming increasingly serious problems among American women. The most recent estimates suggest that there are from 1.5 million to 2.5 million adult American women with alcohol problems. The proportion of adult women who drink and the proportion of women among alcohol abusers have increased steadily over the last 10 years. Now, approximately one out of three alcohol abusers is a woman, as compared to one out of six women among alcohol abusers 10 years ago. Estimates of the number of women with other drug problems are equally alarming. Twice as many women as men use minor tranquilizers, 50% more women than men use barbiturates, three times as many women as men use amphetamines, and 30% more women than men use pills of various types to cope with stress. Although these numbers alone do not reflect abuse, the fact that so many women use so many potentially abused drugs increases the risk of abuse. The best estimates of the number of American women abusing any kind of prescription drug is 1 million to 2 million.


Alcohol Abuse Alcohol Problem Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Drinking Pattern Teenage Girl 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barbara S. McCrady
    • 1
  1. 1.Butler HospitalBrown UniversityProvidenceUSA

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