(EXETER, England) — Young adults who start exhibiting signs of a drinking problem might want to address their problem before they hit middle age.
That’s because a study out of the University of Exeter in England finds that too much alcohol consumption can hamper one’s memory later in life.
Researchers reviewed the drinking habits of 6,500 Americans in their 50s and 60s over two decades to measure alcohol-related cognitive damage at two-year intervals.
With 16 percent of participants admitting they had a drinking problem, it was people in this group much more so than others who demonstrated difficulties with memory on word-recall tests.
The study did not address whether drinking heavily while in your 20s was as harmful as a problem showing up during your 40s.
However, the researchers suggested that the sooner people stop drinking, the sooner they might be able to reverse the damage.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio
Virginia Anderson, Kaiser Health News
Patrick Gillespie, CNN
Jacqueline Howard, CNN