February 5th, 2016

Alcohol and Lawyers — A Test

Graphic from Washington Post article.

Graphic from Washington Post article.

An ugly new study came out showing that lawyers have a huge drinking problem. As per the Washington Post:

More than 20 percent of licensed attorneys drink at levels that are considered “hazardous, harmful, and potentially alcohol-dependent.” That’s three times higher than the rate of problem drinking among the general public.

That’s a huge number. And since the survey covered over 12,000 lawyers, it is impossible to simply dismiss. It is published in the Journal of Addiction Medicine.

Lawyers, it seems, also have a higher incidence of depression, as per the report. The research conclusions were:

Attorneys experience problematic drinking that is hazardous, harmful, or otherwise consistent with alcohol use disorders at a higher rate than other professional populations. Mental health distress is also significant.

You can read the summary at the Washington Post, and the explanations for the results related to the high-stress environment that lawyers work in. Or you can read the actual study if you don’t want to see a reporter’s distillation of the study.

More importantly, you can take the alcohol test itself to see if  you are one of those 20%. The test is an easy 10-question survey you can self-administer, and you can read about the significance of your own score at the link above:

Drinking Test