About one-fifth of the Dubbo city population are heavy drinks and/or smokers according health data released last week, the highest rate of the Central West cities.
The data from the Mitchell Institute has revealed 21.2 per cent of people who live in Dubbo drink at 'risky' levels. This is people over 15 years-old who have reported average alcohol consumption of more than two standard drinks per day over the past year.
Similarly, 19.3 per cent of the population are self-reported smokers. This is people who are over 14 years-old and at the time of interview said they were a current, daily or at least once-a-week.
Dubbo has the highest rate of both heavy drinking and smoking, according to the statistics, compared to the other two cities in the region.
Bathurst a rate of heavy drinking at 20.7 per cent and Orange has a drinking rate of 19.2 per cent.
As far as smoking goes, Bathurst has the lowest level of smoking at 18 per cent and Orange is a little higher at at 18.2 per cent of people smoking. Interestingly, towns like Lithgow and Mudgee have much higher smoking rates, 24.1 per cent and 24.2 per cent retrospectively.
Story continues after graph.
Smaller towns around Dubbo also report high rates of smoking and drinking. Wellington has an 18.4 per cent rate of heavy drinking and 27.1 per cent rate of smoking. Narromine has an 18.5 per cent rate of heavy drinking with 23.5 per cent of people self-reported as smokers.
The Mitchell Institute at the Victorian University reported 18.2 per cent of Australians are deemed 'heavy' drinker. The 2025 target is 16.1 per cent. The same data reports 16.1 per cent of the population are smokers, the 2025 target is five per cent.
The National Health and Medical Research Council recommends no more than two standard drinks a day and to avoid binge drinking. It is advised to have two-alcohol free days every week and to choose low-alcohol drink.
The Cancer Council advises people that the combined effects of smoking and alcohol greatly increase the risk of cancer. Up to 75 per cent of caners of the upper airway and digestive tract can be related to alcohol and smoking.
What do you think? Let us know by filing out the form below.