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UK children getting high on binge drinking

Thirteen children are admitted to UK hospitals every day suffering from the effects of binge drinking // .

Around 140 people a day end up in hospital because of binge drinking. Thirteen children are admitted to UK hospitals every day suffering from the effects of binge drinking.

Including children, more than 51,000 were admitted to hospital in 2004-2005 because of binge drinking.

Researchers found that of those who had alcohol in the previous week, 50 per cent of girls said they had been drunk, compared with 42 per cent of boys.

In October a poll of 2,000 indicated that a quarter of adults, 11 million people, were binge drinking regularly.

More than 20,000 people a year die from alcohol-related causes. And alcohol-related deaths have soared by 20 per cent in the past five years.

Alcohol misuse is estimated to cost the Health Service £1.7 billion per year.

Almost six million people in the UK are thought to be binge drinkers, consuming more than the recommended units in single session.

Safe limits are two to three units a day for women, and three to four units for men.

Studies also show that one in five heavy drinkers develops cirrhosis of the liver.

The binge drinking culture is the product of a combination of the relative cheapness of alcohol and longer opening hours, experts feel.

The illnesses include alcohol-related liver disease including cirrhosis, mental behavior disorders and the toxic effects of drinking when teenagers and children have drunk so much that they have poisoned themselves.

The latest official figures released to the Liberal Democrats show that the number of young admitted to hospital with alcohol-related problems in 2004-05 has risen by 15 per cent since 1996-97, when Labour came to power. As many as 4,809 people under 18 received in-patient care in 2004-2005 compared with 4,173 eight years before.

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