Among those not in the labour force, are younger or older Australians more likely to drink at levels that increase their long-term risk of alcohol-related disease or injury?

Among those not in the labour force, Australians aged 40-49 and 60-69 years are the age groups most likely to drink at levels that increase their long-term risk of alcohol-related disease or injury.

64% of Australians aged 14-17 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 33% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 2%* drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 0.1%** drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 22% of Australians aged 18-24 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 63% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 9% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day) 3-4 drinks; and 6% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 27% of Australians those aged 25-29 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 64% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 6% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 4%* drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 24% of Australians those aged 30-39 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 66% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 6% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 4% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 22% of Australians those aged 40-49 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 61% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 9% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 8% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 27% of Australians those aged 50-59 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 57% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 10% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 6% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 23% of Australians those aged 60-69 years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 59% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 11% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 6% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). 31% of Australians those aged 70+ years who are not in the labour force abstain from alcohol; 59% drink at low risk levels (an average of two or less drinks per day); 7% drink at risky levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of 3-4 drinks per day); and 3% drink at high risk levels associated with long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury (an average of five or more drinks per day). * Estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution. ** Estimate has a relative standard error greater than 50% and is considered too unreliable for general use.

Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW). 2013 National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NCETA secondary analysis, 2015).

* Estimate has a relative standard error of 25% to 50% and should be used with caution.

** Estimate has a relative standard error greater than 50% and is considered too unreliable for general use.

Please note: Percentages may not tally to 100% due to rounding. All measures of alcohol drinks refer to standard drinks.

Long-Term Risk of Alcohol-Related Disease or Injury: Current Australian alcohol guidelines state that long-term risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury increases when you consume an average of three or more standard drinks per day.

Not in the Labour Force: Engaged in home duties, volunteer/charity work, student, retiree/pensioner, other.

Standard Drink: A drink that contains 10 grams (or 12.5 millilitres) of alcohol.