That certainly is a cliché but what about reality? Fortunately, things are not that bad. However, findings from Euregional research clearly shows that not everything is going well.
From October 2019 to January 2020, 11 partners from the Euregio Meuse-Rhine (EMR) and the West-Eifel (DE) carried out a study as part of the euPrevent Social Norms Approach project. An inventory about the consumption behavior of young people (12-26 years) and seniors (55+) from the EMR and the West Eifel was done. Young people were asked about their own behavior and what they think their peers do when it comes to the use of alcohol, cannabis, and gaming. The questions for the seniors were focused on alcohol and medication use. The study involved 4878 young people and 3122 seniors.
Influence on society
Figures from treatment centers, population studies, and health statistics show that we as a society struggle with dealing with products such as alcohol and medicines. In our day-to-day life, we notice that these products play a role in, for example; traffic accidents, the occurrence of (domestic) violence, and sickness.
A selection of the research results
The results of this research show that it is not all bad.
It turns out that 37% of the seniors surveyed never drink alcohol, or at least have not drunk any alcohol at all in the last month. Nearly a third of the seniors drank alcohol at most once a week. The vast majority (97% of the seniors) have never been drunk or at least not in the past month. As many as 97% of the seniors are consciously engaged in the responsible use of medicine.
The youth survey tells us that almost a third of the young people surveyed have never drunk alcohol and that another third only drinks occasionally, but has not done so in the past month. The majority of the young people surveyed (78%) have never used cannabis. Almost a quarter of young people are never gaming.
Even though the impression that young people and seniors have of use by peers show a much more negative picture. The main results of the study are now available in the online Euregional Health Atlas.
Euregional awareness campaign
With these research results in mind, a Euregional awareness campaign will be created to positively inspire people to choose a healthier lifestyle. This Euregional awareness campaign will start in the course of 2021.
This project is supported by Interreg V-A Euregio Meuse-Rhine program.