Work-family conflicts and drinking behaviours among employed women and men

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2006 Jun 9;83(1):49-56. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2005.10.009. Epub 2005 Nov 21.


Objective: To examine the relationship between work-family conflicts and drinking behaviours among women and men, and to discover whether the relationship remains the same after taking into account family structure and socio-economic status.

Method: Cross-sectional surveys were carried out by postal questionnaires in 2001 and 2002 among female and male municipal employees aged 40-60, of Helsinki, Finland; 4228 women and 1043 men participated, with a response rate of 66%. Dependent variables were heavy drinking-for men >12 standard portions per week and for women >9 portions per week; weekly binge drinking including 6 or more portions per occasion; and problem drinking, as measured by the CAGE questionnaire. Independent variables were work-to-family conflicts and family-to-work conflicts. Covariates were age, family structure, education, income, and occupational class.

Results: Work-family conflicts were strongly related to problem drinking among both women and men and also associated with heavy drinking among women. Taking family structure and socio-economic status into account did not markedly change the relationship between work-family conflicts and heavy drinking among women, but strengthened slightly the association with problem drinking among both women and men.

Conclusions: Work-family conflicts are particularly important issues in problem drinking among men and women and also in heavy drinking among women. Improving the balance between work and family may be a way to prevent problem drinking.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology*
  • Alcohol Drinking / psychology*
  • Alcoholism / epidemiology*
  • Alcoholism / psychology*
  • Conflict, Psychological*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Family Characteristics
  • Family*
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Local Government
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Work*