Pattern of alcohol consumption among males and females and associated health problems in Jos
Background Studies on drinking behaviour in Nigeria have reported a preponderance of males, which makes it difficult to make any strong
comparative assertion. Aims The aim of this study was to determine the
types of alcoholic beverages commonly consumed by males and females, to compare the quantity and quality consumed, and to determine the time spent on drinking as well as to determine the mental and physical health problems encountered by both males and females. The study also sought to find out about their knowledge of health hazards associated with alcohol consumption. Method The modified version of the Obot’s 1993 Middle Belt general population survey questionnaire was randomly administered to respondents at various drinking places and offices. RESULTS Four hundred and fifty participants responded to the questionnaires (225 males and 225 females). Beer was the single most preferred alcoholic beverage by both males and females. Both men and women consumed similar quantity of alcoholic beverage but women spent more time drinking. Majority of both sexes had knowledge about the health hazards associated with drinking alcohol. Whereas men reported more mental health problems, both men and women equally experienced physical health problems. CONCLUSION The study reveals that both males and females have a similar drinking behaviour pattern in Jos and majority engaged in problem drinking despite awareness of the health problems associated with alcohol consumption. Hence there is dire need for deliberate Government policy to regulate the production, sale, and consumption of alcoholic beverages in view of the health, social, and economic consequences associated with problem drinking.