After the UK was put into lockdown at the end of March, new figures show that the number of “high-risk” drinkers has doubled while people stayed indoors.
According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCP), some 8.4 million people consumed high-risk amounts of alcohol in June, compared to 4.8 million four months earlier.
Concerns over money, juggling work with childcare and mental health issues over coronavirus are to blame for the huge rise in alcohol consumption, the college said.
Experts from the RCP now fear that addiction services will struggle in the future, following years of being “starved of funds”.
RCP president Dr Adrian James said the government now needs to commit “substantial” investment in public health to prevent lives being “needlessly lost” to addiction.
NHS guidance states that both men and women should not regularly drink more than 14 units a week – the equivalent of roughly seven pints of beer.