New Study Finds Alcohol-related Deaths on the Rise Among American Women

Updated on August 8, 2023

Deaths related to excessive alcohol consumption are on the rise across the United States. This is becoming abundantly true for American women, according to a recent study published on July 28 in the journal JAMA Network Open. While men are roughly three times more likely than women to die from alcohol use, the gap is quickly shrinking and the risk to women has grown tremendously.

The study observed data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data on more than 600,000 deaths linked to alcohol between 1999 and 2020. The data included deaths from alcoholic liver disease, alcohol poisoning, acute intoxication, alcoholic cardiomyopathy, and mental and behavioral disorders that can be linked to alcohol consumption, and other causes.

The data showed that alcohol-related deaths steadily increased in the United States over those 21 years. However, from 2018 to 2020, the rate increased by 14.7 percent for women compared to 12.5 percent for men. The study also found rising rates among senior women. Alcohol-related deaths rose in women over 65 and older by 6.7 percent from 2012 to 2020, compared with a 5.2 percent increase per year in men 65 and older.

One in 11 women suffer from alcohol use disorder, but so do one in seven men. Research has shown that women are about half as likely as men to seek alcohol recovery services.  Women often face more stigmatization, shame, family responsibilities, and socioeconomic barriers than men, they frequently have co-occurring disorders and are less likely to seek treatments. However, they are more likely to seek medical and psychiatric help, but when it comes to alcoholism, they may think the problem will get better on its own; thus, there is a lack of problem recognition. Therefore, alcoholism education to lessen the stigma around what it means to be an alcoholic is crucial.

If you’re an alcoholic who can’t stop drinking or a concerned loved one of an alcoholic, the first step in recovery is education and access to resources. The Magdalen House provides residential recovery, detox, group meetings, structured programs, family support groups, and tools designed to help individuals grow and sustain recovery. For more information please visit,

About The Magdalen House

Founded in Dallas in 1987, The Magdalen House remains the only agency in the Dallas-Fort Worth area to offer comprehensive recovery services – without insurance or state funding – 100% free of charge. The nonprofit is committed to helping alcoholic women and men achieve long-term, sustainable recovery through spiritually based, comprehensive programming. The organization presents the simple problem of alcoholism, along with a practical application of the solution.

Diana Miller
Diana Miller
Chief Development Officer at The Magdalen House

Diana joins The Magdalen House as a grateful recovered alcoholic, having completed the First Step and Next Step programs in 2021. She credits Maggie’s with her recovery and cherishes the opportunity to use her previous experience. Diana has over ten years of experience working in the nonprofit sector; specifically, in fundraising, programming, and community relations. In her work experience, as well as her personal journey, she strives to reach more alcoholic women and educate the community on the disease of alcoholism and the tools for recovery. In her spare time, she is a proud Big Brothers, Big Sisters volunteer. She also enjoys reading and spending time with her three dogs.