Seniors

The life expectancy of the average Australian is longer than ever before. This means older people are generally enjoying life with improved levels of health. As our life expectancy increases, so too do the number of years we are exposed to alcohol.
The baby boomer generation generally uses alcohol at higher rates, and for longer, than previous generations
If you’ve retired, or it’s just around the corner, you’ll be aware of the massive changes it brings to your life and family responsibilities. Retirement means that you have more time to do the things you enjoy. However, aging is not the same for everyone. Aging and retirement can be linked to issues surrounding bereavement, social isolation, psychological, and emotional problems, and physical decline. These health issues can increase your risk factors and alcohol intake. diverse communities Seniors If you’re over 50, you’re in the age group that is most likely to abstain from alcohol. However, you’re also in the age group most likely to drink alcohol every day. For most, this isn’t a problem, but as you age your exposure to alcohol increases your risk of harm, especially when combined with physical and mental decline. Age brings about metabolic changes that reduce the body’s ability to metabolise and excrete drugs and alcohol. So, although you may not change the amount you drink, your physical changes decrease your ability to process alcohol as effectively. Medications and alcohol often don’t mix. You should have an open and honest discussion with your doctor and pharmacist when starting new medications.

Our sources

Information in this section has been drawn and adapted from the following sources:
  • Nicholas, R, & Roche, A, 2014, Information Sheet 1: Why the growing use of alcohol and other drugs among older Australians needs attention. Adelaide, South Australia: National Centre for Education and Training in Addiction (NECTA), Flinders University. Available from: http://nceta.flinders.edu.au/files/3514/1679/0404/EN557.pdf
  • Nicholas, R, & Roche, A, 2014, Information Sheet 2: Alcohol and other drug use and healthy aging: Patterns of use and harm among older Australians. Adelaide, South Australia: National Centre for Education and Training in Addiction (NECTA), Flinders University. Available from: http://nceta.flinders.edu.au/files/5714/1679/0744/EN558.pdf
  • Nicholas, R, & Roche, A, 2014, Information Sheet 3: The silver Tsunami: the impact of Australia’s aging population. Adelaide, South Australia: National Centre for Education and Training in Addiction (NECTA), Flinders University. Available from: http://nceta.flinders.edu.au/files/7014/1679/1083/EN559.pdf
  • Nicholas, R, & Roche, A, 2014, Information Sheet 7: Older Australians, opioids and the treatment of pain. Adelaide, South Australia: National Centre for Education and Training in Addiction (NECTA), Flinders University. Available from: http://nceta.flinders.edu.au/files/4914/1679/2636/EN563.pdf