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Title: Why do older adults develop problem drinking? : a qualitative study
Author: O'Sullivan, John
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2016
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There is reason to suspect that a substantial number of older adults are regularly drinking alcohol in excess of recommended guidelines and may be regarded as problem drinkers. In the UK, the number of older adult problem drinkers is projected to increase as the population continues to age. Problematic alcohol consumption has negative health implications for the older adult and causes a strain on public services. Approximately one third of older adult problem drinkers experience a late onset of the problem, after the age of 55 years. Existing literature supports the narrative that this group develop the problem in response to stressful life events, however there is relatively little qualitative research exploring the reasons for the development of late onset problematic drinking from the point of view of the individual. Seven older adult problem drinkers were recruited from a Midlands based alcohol recovery project and interviewed. Transcripts were analysed using Thematic Analysis and four major themes emerged: History as an explanation; Personality as an explanation; External precipitants; and Factors maintaining the problem. A discussion of the findings is provided in the context of existing literature and support is lent to an integrated theoretical model in understanding the development of late onset problem drinking and the recognition of possible avenues for intervention by clinicians and services.
Supervisor: Davis, Paul Sponsor: Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available