- Dec 26, 2018
The tsunami that struck Japan after a 9.0 earthquake was harsh on many families. Some are still feeling the pain of a lost one and putting their lives back together after losing everything.In contrast with lower rises in the rest of the country, consultations for excessive drinking and other alcohol-related issues have increased at a greater pace compared to fiscal 2009 in the three east Japan prefectures most affected by the March 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake: Miyagi, Fukushima and Iwate.
We are seeing unprecedented numbers in both suicides in relation to deaths from Covid. While not nearly as half of the deaths over the initial tsunami as of yet (6722 country-wide), this may continue to rise until a vaccine or treatment is available to match or exceed those sums. What's more worrisome is the suicide rate as it has spiked since the pandemic began. Compounding a rise of 20% in alcoholism and those thoughts worsen if help, which is hard during a pandemic, is not sought out.According to totals from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, when compared with the number of cases dealt with at government consultation services in fiscal 2009, the most recent data from fiscal 2018 shows a rise of between 1.7 and 2.6 times in Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures. Over the same period, alcohol-related consultations in the rest of the country rose by around 20%.
While once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic is true, there is a 1/3rd recovery rate.Sachio Matsushita, an expert in addictive disorders and deputy director at the National Hospital Organization Kurihama Medical and Addiction Center in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, told the Mainichi Shimbun, "We could speculate that patient numbers falling at the same time as consultations rise in the three disaster-hit prefectures is in part proof of effective intervention before people's conditions develop into addictive disorders.
If alcohol consumption continues to rise in order to distract people's lives from situations beyond their control, that total figure could rise. Not to mention, Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) can run in the families of that 1/3rd. When this is combined with another serious issue, suicides in Japan that are on the rise and already at double the count of those numbers in the U.S., we could see a terrible generational impact moving forward in the next couple of decades.
Source: Rise in alcohol addiction-related consultations far steeper in Japan prefs hit by 2011 quake - The Mainichi
The views expressed on this page by users and staff are their own, not those of Okinawa.Org.