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Don’t Bottle it Up; New online tool launched to advise on safe drinking levels

The Tower Hamlets Drug and Alcohol Action Team (DAAT) have commissioned an alcohol online tool called Don’t Bottle it Up (DBIU) which allows residents to assess how risky their drinking is through a free and confidential test.

Don’t Bottle It Up (DBIU) is a web portal which allows those residents who consume alcohol to assess how risky their drinking is, access free personalised advice online and be signposted to telephone and /or face-to-face support in their local area if needed.

Although a significant proportion of residents in Tower Hamlets don’t drink at all (48%), those who do, have higher levels of alcohol-related problems than the London average and the rest of England.¹

Mayor John Biggs said: “Don’t Bottle It Up is a simple way to become more aware of how much you are drinking  as well as raising awareness of potential health risks. We have fantastic services locally that anyone can access, if in need of extra support.”

DBIU aims to increase the number of people accessing services, and ultimately having healthier relationships with alcohol. The Chief Medical Officer (CMO) guidelines advise that adults should drink no more than 14 units of alcohol a week. Around 1 in 5 adults in Tower Hamlets drink more than 14 units of alcohol a week.

Cllr Denise Jones, lead for adults, health and social care said: “The majority of adults drinking above the recommended guidelines do not have an ‘alcohol problem’, but are at risk of developing health problems or a future dependency.

“These ‘at risk’ drinkers  may benefit from simple brief advice which highlights the risks of drinking at that level and the benefits of cutting down.DBIU allows people to assess their own drinking in a safe environment and to access interventions and services over the internet.”

There are thought to be around 3,400 dependent drinkers in Tower Hamlets, with approximately 82% of them not accessing treatment. Many of them are unable to visit traditional services, or are unwilling to because of perceived stigma.