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Long working hours linked to alcohol addiction: New Zealand study

08-08-2011 15:35 BJT

WELLINGTON, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- A New Zealand study has found that people who work at least 50 hours a week can be up to three times more at risk of alcohol problems than people who work fewer hours.

The study, conducted by the University of Otago, used data that followed more than 1,000 people born in Christchurch in 1977 through to age 30.

Study leader Dr Sheree Gibb said it aimed to examine whether working hours were related to alcohol problems in early adulthood.

Data from more than 1,000 participants at ages 25 and 30 showed a significant association between longer working hours and alcohol- related problems.

Longer working hours were associated with higher levels of alcohol problems including frequent alcohol use and alcohol abuse or dependence.

People who worked 50 hours or more on average a week were 1.8 to 3.3 times more likely to have alcohol-related problems than those who were not working, and about 1.2 to 1.5 times more likely to have alcohol-related problems than those who worked 30 to 49 hours a week.

The higher risk of alcohol abuse for those who worked longer hours was evident in both men and women, according to the study.

Gibb said the finding could suggest a need for consideration of policies and programs targeting individuals who worked long hours, with the aim of reducing rates of alcohol-related problems.

The article had been accepted for publication by the UK-based journal Addiction.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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