While many New Zealanders enjoy the social aspects of drinking alcohol, from a health perspective there is no entirely “safe” level of drinking.
Most importantly, there is no 'safe' level of drinking for children, adolescents and pregnant women.
In general, the more alcohol consumed the greater the risk of short and long-term harm. Alcohol causes over 60 types of illnesses, and increases the risk of over 300 more. This harm places a significant burden on our health, social and other services as well as the individuals and families affected. For more information on the harms from drinking, click here.
There are some styles or patterns of drinking that pose the greatest risk (e.g. binge drinking and dependence). This section takes a look at these and suggests some actions that can help reduce the risk of harm.
This section also covers the harms from drinking during pregnancy and what you can do to support loved ones around you to avoid drinking during this important time.
If you are particularly interested in addressing drinking among children and young people, please click here.