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More Aussies giving up the booze: report

AAP logoAAP 6/10/2016 Sarah Wiedersehn

Australians are drinking less alcohol, with the number of people abstaining from the booze on the rise, a report says.

However, the younger generations continue to drink at risky levels.

The "Trends in alcohol availability, use and treatment" report, released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) on Friday, says that 18-to-24-year-olds are the group most likely to report having consumed alcohol at risky levels.

Nearly half, or 47 per cent, of all young adults report regularly drinking risky levels of alcohol on a single occasion.

In 2013-2014, the amount of alcohol consumed per person was 9.7 litres, down from 10.8 litres in 2008-09.

The proportion of Australians who abstain from drinking alcohol has also risen in recent years, from 17 per cent in 2004 to 22 per cent in 2013.

Those with a drinking problem are also 20 per cent more more likely to seek help, compared to a decade ago, the report said.

For every 10,000 people, 30 sought alcohol treatment in 2013-14.

AIHW spokesman Tim Beard says the results suggest strategies such as increasing the price of alcohol and restricting trading hours have had a positive outcome in reducing the overall consumption levels of alcohol.

Mr Beard said that while there are positive drinking patterns emerging overall, patterns of risky drinking and alcohol dependence continue to be significant issues in Australia, especially among young Australians.

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