To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Six-question test determines if you're a 'grey-zone drinker'

Six-question test determines if you're a 'grey-zone drinker'

You could be in the grey zone and not even realise

You and your mates might enjoy the odd round of pints at the pub every now and again. Or perhaps you think you’re ‘classier’ and pour up a glass of wine with your dinner at home on a Friday.

But while some may think they’re just having the 2-3 casual drinks here and there; you could be in the ‘grey zone’ of drinking.

The NHS advises not drinking more than 14 units of alcohol a week.

For context, one unit of alcohol is 8g or 10ml of pure alcohol, which is about half a pint of lower to normal-strength lager/beer/cider (ABV 3.6%), a single small shot measure (25ml) of spirits (25ml, ABV 40%), or a small glass (125ml, ABV 12%) of wine containing about 1.5 units of alcohol.

So, with a large number of Brits drinking each week, just what is a ‘grey-zone drinker’, is it the same as an alcoholic, and how do you know if you are one?

You may be in the Grey Zone.
Getty Stock Photo

What is a 'grey zone' drinker?

Sarah Rusbatch is a Grey Area Drinking Coach and explained to The Sun: "Most don't view themselves as in need of help, but they do acknowledge their alcohol use is having a negative impact on their life in some way: physically, mentally or both."

'Grey zone' drinkers are people who drink more than a ‘moderate amount’ of alcohol, yet don’t meet the ‘criteria’ for actual dependence.

She added: "Grey area drinkers have passed the point of 'take it or leave it' drinking and are using alcohol for something else – reward, a relaxant, confidence, to switch off or to numb themselves from their emotion."

Getty Stock Photo

How do I know if I'm a 'grey zone' drinker?

Helpfully, Rusbatch has devised a six-question test to give you an idea of it you should cut down on your drinking:

1. Are you concerned about the amount of alcohol you drink?

2. Do you set yourself rules about your drinking, for example how many drinks you can have and how often?

3. Do you secretly worry about drinking and find yourself regretting drunken decisions and conversations?

4. Does alcohol feel like it's robbing you of life?

5. Are you not always honest with others about how much you drink?

6. Do you take breaks from alcohol but later return to old habits?

According to the Grey Area Drinking Coach, you could be a grey-zone drinker if you answered yes to just one of the questions from the test.

The NHS has various tips for cutting down on drinking, including setting a budget, choosing smaller sizes and letting friends and family know.

Please drink responsibly. If you want to discuss any issues relating to alcohol in confidence, contact Drinkline on 0300 123 1110, 9am–8pm weekdays and 11am–4pm weekends for advice and support.

Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Image

Topics: Health, Mental Health, Food And Drink