Men’s Health Week 2019 – Men and Addiction, the Numbers

Men’s Health Week 2019 is all about the important numbers – the health facts and figures that men need to know to stay well. It’s about drinking no more than 14 units of alcohol per week, keeping your waist size under 37 inches, eating 5 portions of fruit and veg a day and exercising for 150 minutes per week.

At the sharpest end of the statistics, 1 in 5 men die before the age of 65 and 75% of all suicides are male.To mark Men’s Health Week 2019, we want to raise awareness about men and addiction. Men are still at much greater risk of substance addiction and gambling disorder than women. When it comes to eating disorders, although boys and men rarely die from an eating disorder, hospitalisations are increasingly common.

If you recognise yourself or a man you love in these numbers we’re sharing, please understand that specialist help is available, whenever you are ready. UKAT offer confidential assessments and treatment for all forms of addiction, including if you have a co-occurring mental illness. Please contact us if you want to recover from addiction. Family members are most welcome to call too.

Men and Addiction – Alcohol

Overall, men are riskier drinkers than women. Men are hospitalised more because of alcohol and they’re almost twice as likely as women to die from alcohol-related causes.

  • Published in February 2019, NHS England figures reveal that:
  • 28% of men in England drink more than 14 units per week – as compared to 14% of women.
  • Men aged 55-64 are the most likely to drink more than recommended alcohol limits.
  • 35% of men in the highest income household are risky drinkers, compared to 20% of men in lower income households.
  • Alcohol-related hospital admissions were 61% male in 2017-18.
  • 66% of alcohol-related deaths were men.

Public Health England figures on alcohol-only treatment show that:
60% of people who received alcohol treatment in 2017-18 were men.

Men and Addiction – Drugs

According to some data, men use more drugs than women. They also get addicted, hospitalised and die more because of drug use compared to females.

NHS England statistics on drug misuse from November 2018 show that:

  • In every age category from 16-24 through to the over 75s, drug addiction is higher in men than women.
  • Men use powder cocaine, ecstasy, hallucinogens, amphetamines, cannabis, mephedrone and ketamine more than women.
  • 4.3% of all men are drug dependent (more than twice the proportion of women).
  • Hospitals admissions for drug-related mental and behavioural disorders are 74% male.
  • 72% of all drug poisoning and misuse deaths are men.

Public Health England figures on drug treatment show:

Men and Addiction – Gambling

There are an estimated 430,000 problem gamblers in the UK. Gambling Commission research published in February 2019 found that men are 6 times more likely than women to become problem gamblers. This could indicate that at least 368,000 British men are suffering the most serious consequences of gambling disorder. Other sources put the number much higher.

The Gambling Commission research also reveals:

  • 51% of all men in Britain gamble.
  • 25-34-year-old men are most at risk of gambling disorder.
  • 7% of men (compared to 4% of women) have self-excluded at some point and requested to be barred from a gambling company for a period of time.
  • 59% of male online gamblers with a social media account have been prompted to bet by a gambling company’s posts.

In April 2019, the maximum stake on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) was cut from £100 to £2. Dubbed the ‘crack cocaine of gambling’, FOBT users are the most likely to become problem gamblers. Men under the age of 35 are the most likely to use FOBTs.

Men and Addiction – Eating Disorders

According to the eating disorder charity BEAT, there are 1.25 million people in the UK with an eating disorder – of these, 25% are men (312,500 people).

In 2017, a Guardian analysis of NHS data showed that hospital admissions for men with eating disorders had increased by 70% in 6 years.

Around 10% of male gym users have muscle dysmorphia, an anxiety disorder where people feel they are insufficiently muscular. Research consistently shows that men with muscle dysmorphia (also known as ‘bigorexia’) are more likely to have disordered eating habits.

Amongst boys, there are twice as many hospital admissions for eating disorders as there were seven years ago – rising from 235 to 466. Concerns about muscularity and pressure from social media are reasons given for this rise.

Men and Addiction – the Numbers for Addiction Help

UKAT is the leading national provider of addiction detox and rehab programmes. You can find all of our contact details here, including our freephone helpline, local number, email, contact form and live chat system. Please enquire with us today about addiction treatment.

Read the latest reviews from UKAT clients.