Navigation Links
More Young Women Driving Drunk
Date:2/17/2010

Some blame societal pressures for increase in fatal crashes found in U.S. study,,

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 17 (HealthDay News) -- Although men make up the vast majority of drunken drivers in the United States, more young women are driving drunk and getting into fatal car accidents than ever before, a new study reports.

Laura Dean-Mooney, national president of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), said that the finding "is not surprising" because social pressures on women have increased, and women are picking up some of the bad habits that men have.

"Young women in particular turn to drugs and alcohol to cope and to feel like a part of the crowd or lose their inhibitions," she said.

The study, based on data from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, found that "female drivers involved in fatal crashes actually increased over the years we studied -- 1995 to 2007," said Dr. Federico Vaca, a professor of emergency medicine at Yale University School of Medicine and the study's lead researcher.

The finding is published Feb. 18 in Injury Prevention.

Though young men are still the ones mostly involved in fatal crashes, the increase in accidents among young women is concerning, Vaca said. And he, too, thinks a social dynamic may be at play, with the increase in risky behavior reflecting a growing desire among young women to fit in.

In their research, Vaca's team used data on alcohol-related accidents in five age groups: 16-year-olds, 17-year-olds, 18-year-olds, 19- and 20-year-olds and 21- to 24-year-olds. They also looked at blood alcohol levels from 0.01 grams per deciliter (g/dl) to 0.15 g/dl, the level at which drivers have a 100-fold increase in the risk for an accident. The legal blood alcohol for driving in all U.S. states is 0.08 g/dl.

In the 12-year period examined by the researchers, 179,891 fatal car accidents were recorded among drivers 16 to 24 years old. Among young men, the accident rate dropped by 2.5 accidents per 100,000 people. The decline was mostly among those 16 to 20, and the rate remained the same for those 21 to 24.

Among young women, the rate fell by 0.8 accidents per 100,000 people for 16-year-olds and remained the same for 17- and 18-year-olds. But it increased 0.7 per 100,000 among 19-year-olds and 0.6 per 100,000 among 21- to 24-year-olds, Vaca's group found.

In addition, among those involved in fatal crashes, the proportion of young men (1.2 percent) who had a positive blood alcohol test was less than the proportion of women (3.1 percent), the researchers noted.

The greatest increase in fatal car accidents was among those with a blood alcohol level of 0.15 g/dl or more. Among women, this rose 2 percent, compared with 2.4 percent among men.

But the increase in the proportion of young people involved in fatal car crashes who had positive blood alcohol tests was greater among women than men, regardless of when the accident occurred.

Weekday alcohol-related accidents among women rose by 3.5 percent, and weekend accidents rose 2.2 percent, compared with a 1.5 percent increase weekdays and 0.4 percent on weekends among young men, the study found.

"The scary thing is that many women are driving drunk and they are killing or injuring families, including their own children," Dean-Mooney, of MADD, said.

Dr. Judy Schaechter, an associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, said that "there may be a loss of the notion of what it means to be feminine."

More women are drinking now, she said, and "we know that alcohol reduces inhibitions and increases risky behavior, whether that's driving aggressively, driving recklessly, not wearing your seat belt or having unsafe sex."

Schaechter said that she thinks messages about drunken driving need to be directed specifically toward young women. They should point out some of the potential consequences of drunken driving, such as jail time, disfigurement and other crippling injuries, which may resonate with women, she said.

But Dean-Mooney said that the public has become saturated with drinking-and-driving messages. The next step in controlling the problem, she said, is technology that prevents drunken drivers from starting their cars -- something she predicted would eventually be on every car.

In the meantime, Vaca said, people should simply never drive when drunk and never get into a car with someone they know is drunk at the wheel.

"Traffic accidents are still the leading cause of death among young people," he said.

More information

Mothers Against Drunk Driving has more on drunken driving.



SOURCES: Federico Vaca, M.D., M.P.H., professor, emergency medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Conn.; Laura Dean-Mooney, national president, Mothers Against Drunk Driving; Judy Schaechter, M.D., associate professor, pediatrics, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami; Feb. 18, 2010, Injury Prevention


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Air pollution linked to cardiovascular risk indices in healthy young adults
2. Urban Smog Tough on Young Adults Hearts
3. Male deer are born to live fast, die young
4. Bipolar Diagnoses in Younger People Show Huge Increase
5. HealthInsuranceFinders.com Launches Video Contest for Young Directors
6. Nuclear medicine approach can be first choice for excluding pulmonary embolism in young women
7. New HIV diagnoses rising in New York City among young men who have sex with men
8. Especially Yours and Paula Young Team up with Diahann Carroll and Jaclyn Smith in the Fight Against Breast Cancer
9. Office-Based Medical Treatment and Internet Resources Are Potential Solution to Rising Painkiller Misuse Among Teens, Young Adults
10. Young Children Thrive on 30,000 Words a Day
11. Young Twin Cities Boy Shows There is Life After Cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th Annual ... in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, Jon ... fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, non-timed ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... “America On The Brink”: ... “America On The Brink” is the creation of published author, William Nowers. ... As a WWII veteran, he spent thirty years in the Navy. Following ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, Inc. ( ... announced today the introduction of an innovative new design of the shoulder pad. ... you get maximum comfort while controlling your pain while using cold therapy. By utilizing ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... HMP , a leader in ... 2017 Folio Magazine Eddie Digital Award for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ Winners were announced ... 2017. , The annual award competition recognizes editorial and design excellence across a range ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... In the United States, single-family home ... states—like New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Texas, Virginia, Connecticut, and California—the average is ... low property-tax rates, which contributes to the relatively lower cost of living in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/19/2017)... , Sept. 19, 2017 HistoSonics, Inc., a venture-backed medical device company developing ... of targeted tissues, announced three leadership team developments today:   ... ... ... Veteran medical device executive Josh Stopek ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... , Sept. 18, 2017 EpiVax, ... of bioinformatics and immune engineering, today announced ... influenza A (H7N9) vaccine. ... to seasonal influenza and presents a challenge ... prior exposure to be effective. Using state-of-the-art ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... , Sept. 12, 2017  Consumer reviews on the independent ... as the number one company for hearing aids, ranking it ... fifteen other brands. ... Hearing Named #1 by Consumers For Hearing Aids ... Embrace Hearing is an online store that provides high performance, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: