Alcohol use, depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder together account for 45 percent of disabilities among young people ages 10 to 24 worldwide, about four times as much as that caused by unintentional injuries, according to a study of data from the World Health Organization.
The study researchers added up years of healthy living that were lost due to a disability and death. The Los Angeles Times reports that the study found alcohol accounted for 7 percent of lost healthy years. The article notes that the study is the first of its kind to give a comprehensive picture of young people’s global health.
“Although risk factors and the lifestyles that young people adopt might not affect their health during this period, they can have a substantial effect in later life and can potentially affect the health of future generations,” the authors wrote in The Lancet.