Alcohol is the most widely used drug in Australia today, and many people's lives have been severely affected by either short or long term harmful alcohol consumption.

  • 87.9% of Australians aged over 14 years had drunk alcohol at some stage in their life
  • 39.5% of drinkers consumed alcohol on a weekly basis (1)

The damage alcohol can cause:

Drinking during adolescence can seriously impair brain development in teenagers.

This can have long term impacts on memory, ability to learn and problem solving skills, mood control, and mental health issues, such as depression.

Drinking as an adolescent can bring about learning difficulties, memory problems and other issues later in life.

For children and young people under 18 years of age, not drinking alcohol is the safest option.

Tips to stay safe when drinking alcohol

  • For healthy men and women, drinking no more than two standard drinks on any day reduces your risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury over a lifetime
  • Drinking no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion reduces the risk of alcohol-related injury at that time
  • Start with non alcoholic drinks, and alternate with alcoholic drinks
  • Drink slowly
  • Consider drinks with lower alcohol content
  • Eat before and/or while you are drinking alcohol
  • If you participate in rounds of drinks try to include some non-alcoholic drinks

More Information

Counselling Online
Free alcohol and drug counselling online.
1800 888 236

24 hours a day
7 days a week

Family Drug Support
Support for families faced with problematic drug use.
1300 368 186

24 hours a day
7 days a week

Confidential telephone
13 11 14

24 hours a day
7 days a week

1. 2010 National Drug Strategy Household Survey

Year of Birth