People who work more than a 50 hour week are three times more likely to develop a drinking problem than those who are unemployed or work fewer hours.
A research team from Otago University in New Zealand have said they have found a statistically solid link between alcohol abuse and working hours.
After studying the drinking habits of more than 1,000 people the researchers concluded such intense alcohol consumption could be related to stress.
They believe some participants relied on alcohol to relieve the pressure of managing a hectic career with a social and home life.
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Suggestions were also made that people could be influenced by colleagues to drink more if they have a social relationship outside of the office.
Sheree Gibb led the study and commented on the results. “Individuals working 50 or more hours per week had rates of alcohol-related problems that were 1.8 to 3.3 times higher than those for individuals who were not employed.”
She added: “Individuals who work longer hours may have more social contact with co-workers and workplaces where long hours are commonplace may experience a more sociable atmosphere that involves a greater level of alcohol use.”
The findings will be published in the journal ‘Addiction’.