Reducing the amount you drink
The lower risk guidelines are:
Everyone should have 1-2 days off drinking per week.
You can calculate units of alcohol (see below) or use the Change 4 Lifedrinks checker.
Units of alcohol should be on alcohol labels or you can calculate by multiplying the percentage alcohol with the volume (in litres).
For example, a bottle of wine (75cl = 0.75 litres) with 12% alcohol, 0.75 x 12 = 9 units in the bottle.
Keep a drink diary for a few weeks (see below or visit the NHS Choices interactive tools to track your drinking).
Medical warning : If you have physical withdrawal symptoms such as shaking, sweating or feeling anxious until you have a drink, take medical advice before stopping completely. See Last Orders below.
Top tips for cutting down
Having a drink to unwind, celebrate, commiserate or give courage is part of British culture. Being a student can often involve peer pressure to binge drink.
It is amazing how alcohol can sneak up on us. The odd glass in the evening can quickly become 2 or 3, most evenings.
Know your limits, and try to stick to them…
The Last Orders website gives information on the services they provide, plus you can download a leaflet giving more on units, suggestions on cutting down etc.
Drinkaware is a drinks industry sponsored site which includes information pages, tools etc. The unit calculator lists common brands to help you plan for your night out.
The NHS Choices website has lost of pages on alcohol and health such as unit and calorie calculators, tips on cutting down, personal stories etc.
See the Change 4 Life website for more on reducing drinking including the sneaky drinks advert.
Alcohol Concern is a national charity campaigning for effective policy and improved services for those affected by alcohol. Their website gives further information. See also the National Drink Helpline 0800 917 8282
Benefits of cutting down
Lower risk drinking
Medium risk drinking (more than guidelines opposite)
Higher risk drinking (35 + units for women and 50 + for men)
All of the above +