Reducing harm caused by alcohol

Alcohol and health

Drinking too much can damage physical and mental health in the short and long term.

As well as affecting weight, looks and sleep, heavy drinking can lead to a wide range of medical conditions including high blood pressure, liver disease, stroke, cancer and brain damage.

Drinking any amount of alcohol increases the risk of damage to health and that risk generally increases in line with how much you drink.

Binge drinking, where a large amount of alcohol is drunk in a short space of time, is associated with additional health risks such as accidental injury. Being drunk raises the risk of being injured from a fall, road traffic accident, house fire, or violence.