Elderly abuse and alcohol consumption
Excessive alcohol consumption and the exposure of the elderly to family violence are in close connection. They represent both a general and social problem from a legal, medical and social aspect. The objectives of this study were to 1) test the frequency of alcohol consumption in older persons with respect to certain social and demographic characteristics; and 2) test the correlation between alcohol consumption and family violence towards the elderly. The sample used in this study was constructed as probabilistic with a random selection of participants in order to ensure representativeness for the City of Zagreb population over 65 years. The study included 1000 persons older than 65, among which 38% were male (N=380) and 62% female (N=620). The results showed a significantly more frequent consumption of alcohol among older men aged between 65 and 74, elderly people with life partners (unmarried), and financially independent older persons. A correlation between alcohol consumption frequency and exposure to violence was also established, as well as that older persons who consume alcohol are more likely to commit acts of violence. Further research is needed on the risk and protective factors for specific forms of family violence so as to detect the causes of violence within families as well as mechanisms that alleviate coping with violence.
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