One in 10 U.S. kids have alcoholic parent: study

CHICAGO Thu Feb 16, 2012 11:15am EST

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CHICAGO (Reuters) - More than one in 10 U.S. children live with an alcoholic parent and are at increased risk of developing a host of health problems of their own, according to a new government study released on Thursday.

Researchers at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) analyzed national survey data from 2005 through 2010 and found that, on average, 7.5 million children -- about 10.5 percent of the country's under-18 population -- lived with a parent abusing alcohol during any given year.

Most of those kids -- an average of 6.1 million each year -- lived in two-parent households where one or both of the adults had a drinking disorder, the researchers found.

Of the 1.4 million children who lived in a single-parent home where the adult had a drinking issue, the overwhelming majority -- 1.1 million -- were in female-headed households, SAMHSA said.

The researchers said children living with alcoholics were at greater risk of suffering from a number of mental health problems, including depression and anxiety.

The children were also more likely to be abused or neglected by their parents, more likely to have cognitive or language deficiencies, and four times more likely to develop alcohol problems of their own, the researchers said.

(Reporting by James B. Kelleher; Editing by Daniel Trotta)

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Comments (1)
jckl2012 wrote:
Please include a link to the study. I have questions regarding how the study determined the parents of a child and judged that parent to be an alcoholic. The article’s title is a hyperpole, if the study only looked at single parents. I’d liked to see whether statistical contortion was performed.

Feb 19, 2012 6:52pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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