So dangerous is “passive drinking”

In the pub is Smoking, so Smoking the non-Smoking involuntarily: That passive health Smoking is a danger, is already known for a long time. Now, researchers at the Munich Institute for therapy research (IFT) have found a similar effect for the “passive” drink.

The analysis from the journal “BMC Medicine” shows that When people consume alcohol, suffer from the behaviour of others. In the field of road traffic drunk drivers cause deadly accidents, acts of violence, often alcohol, and drinking mothers are harming their unborn children.

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

In the year of 2014 for 12,650 babies arrived in Germany, according to the study, with a so-called Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) to the world, the researchers report. 3000 of the children were suffering, therefore, under the full expression of the disorder, which is also referred to as fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS).

The affected children are part of short stature and have abnormalities in the face. Many of the motor skills are limited. Typical abnormalities in behaviour, as well as problems with memory, attention or learning ability.

Alcohol consumption is also to uninvolved third parties is a risk, concludes the study Director Ludwig Kraus: “This is analogous to passive Smoking.” How many children are harmed by the alcohol consumption of their parents, is difficult to capture. Development damage were often only after years, and there is no reporting obligation for FASD or FAS.

For their analysis, the researchers had evaluated international overview studies, including a survey conducted by the Robert Koch Institute. Accordingly, in 2017, suffered 10,000 newborns 177 of FASD. The researchers counted the number of 715.000 births in Germany is high. “For Germany, the Figures have been underestimated so far,” says Kraus. Here, FAS and FASD are not even the only possible consequences of alcohol consumption during pregnancy.


“There are a lot of FAS or FASD cases are not recognized,” says Kraus. While it is expected to pay from rising, since the alcohol consumption in Germany is decreasing, rather, the psychologist. Nevertheless, he called for more prevention.

In road transport, the negative consequences of alcohol consumption. Of 2675 people who died in 2014 through no fault of the road, were in operation 1214, the victims of Alcohol, mostly as a passenger or pedestrian. Also acts of violence were often committed under the influence of alcohol. 368 homicides were under the influence of alcohol in 55 of the cases, the perpetrator.

The researchers suggest several counter-measures:

  • Education about the health risks of alcohol consumption in pregnancy
  • tougher penalties for drunk drivers
  • more traffic controls
  • Therapy services for people who are under the influence of alcohol violent
  • Restrictions on the marketing of alcoholic beverages
  • Increase in the price of alcohol

In the end, such measures also benefit the consumers themselves, the researchers argue. Alcohol abuse is worldwide, cases is the fourth most common cause of disease and death. Abusive alcohol consumption increase the risk for numerous types of cancer.