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1 in 10 U.S. Kids Lives With Parent Who Has Abused Alcohol: Report

1 in 10 U.S. Kids Lives With Parent Who Has Abused Alcohol: Report

02/16/12

THURSDAY, Feb. 16 (HealthDay News) -- About 7.5 million American children under the age of 18 live with a parent who's struggled with alcohol abuse over the past year, a new government report finds.

That's equal to 10.5 percent of children across the country, say researchers at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), which issued the report.

"The enormity of this public health problem goes well beyond these tragic numbers as studies have shown that the children of parents with untreated alcohol disorders are at far greater risk for developing alcohol and other problems later in their lives," SAMHSA Administrator Pamela Hyde said in an agency news release.

According to the report, 6.1 million of children living with an alcohol-abusing parent live in two-parent households, while the remaining 1.4 million reside in single-parent homes where that parent has struggled with alcohol over the past 12 months. About 1.1 million children living in a single-parent home live with a mother; the remainder live with a father, the SAMHSA report said.

The report is based on data from SAMHSA's 2005-2010 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an annual survey involving 65,000 people nationwide aged 12 and older.

Hyde said that help is available for people with drinking problems, and her agency and other groups "are promoting programs that can help those with alcohol disorders find recovery not only for themselves, but for the sake of their children."

More information

There's more on this issue at the National Association for Children of Alcoholics.

Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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