08.02.2023 - More than one in ten have been negatively affected by someone in their life who has drunk too much alcohol in the past year. This is according to a new report from CAN (The Swedish Council for Information on Alcohol and Other Drugs). The report identifies how common it is to be negatively affected in various ways by the use of alcohol and drugs by others. The results are based on responses from more than 36,000 people aged 17-84.
"Surveys often focus on the person who has an alcohol or drug problem, but here we have also asked whether they have been negatively affected by someone else's use," says Erica Sundin, a researcher with research expertise at CAN and author of the report.
The phrase "having someone in your life" can refer to anything from close family members to colleagues and neighbours.
"We see that almost 4% have been negatively affected by the drug use of someone in their life," says Erica Sundin.
The report also highlights how common it is to seek professional help for oneself for problems caused by the use of alcohol and drugs by others.
The more seriously a person was affected by the use of alcohol or drugs by others, the more likely they were to have sought help for it.
"This survey provides new evidence that only a small proportion of those affected by other people's alcohol and drug problems seek help and support for their situation," says Erica Sundin.
In the group with the most extensive problems, with overlapping problems from both alcohol and drugs, only 30% had sought help.
Among those who had sought professional help, most had sought help from the health care system. This was twice as common as seeking help from social services. Women were more likely than men to have sought help.
The results are from 2021 and are compared with results from 2013 and 2017.
Watch the author of the report present the report here