Support for me


There have been a number of studies conducted, both in Australia and overseas, examining the alcohol consumption levels of police officers. The general finding among these studies is that police officers consume greater quantities of alcohol per occasion than the normal population. Research conducted in the policing context has found that factors such as shift work, a lack of leadership and support, occupational stress and police culture are associated with excessive levels of alcohol consumption.

National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) guidelines now say to reduce the risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury for healthy men and women, drink no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than 4 standard drinks on any one day.

The less you choose to drink, the lower your risk of alcohol-related harm. For some people not drinking at all is the safest option.

Do you have a drinking problem?

It’s not always easy to tell when your alcohol intake has crossed the line from moderate or social drinking to problem drinking. Drinking is so common in many cultures and the effects vary so widely from person to person, it’s not always easy to figure out if you have a drinking problem. But if you consume alcohol to cope with difficulties or to avoid feeling bad, you’re in potentially dangerous territory.

You may have a drinking problem if you:

  • Feel guilty or ashamed about your drinking.
  • Lie to others or hide your drinking habits.
  • Need to drink in order to relax or feel better.
  • “Black out” or forget what you did while you were drinking.
  • Regularly drink more than you intended to.


The bottom line is how alcohol affects you. If your drinking is causing problems in your life, then you have a drinking problem. 

Drinking problems can sneak up on you, so it’s important to be aware of the warning signs of alcohol abuse and alcoholism and take steps to cut back if you recognize them. Understanding the problem is the first step to overcoming it and either cutting back to healthy levels or quitting altogether.

Tips to cut down on alcohol consumption:

  • Keep track of your drinking habits. Instead of relying on memory, jot down your drinks in a diary to see exactly how much and how often you drink.
  • Change your drinking habits. Control the amount of alcohol you drink by setting some goals, such as not drinking alone or when stressed. Schedule at least two alcohol-free days each week.
  • Don’t drink on an empty stomach. A full stomach slows the absorption of alcohol.
  • Quench your thirst with water or soft drinks. Otherwise, you risk gulping down alcoholic drinks.
  • Sip your drink slowly. Put down the glass after each mouthful.
  • Take a break. Make every second drink a non-alcoholic beverage.
  • Buy low-alcohol alternatives. Options include light beer and reduced alcohol wine.
  • Opt out of ‘shouts’. Drink at your own pace. If you can’t avoid buying a shout, get yourself a non-alcoholic drink.
  • Avoid salty snacks, such as potato chips or peanuts. Salt makes you thirsty and more inclined to drink fast.
  • Do something other than drink. Hit the dance floor or play a game of pool. You’re less likely to drink out of boredom if you’re busy having fun.

There different treatment options that you can access to get support for yourself or a loved one who is experiencing difficulties with alcohol. This can include both psychological treatment and medication. You can speak to your GP, a QPS Senior Psychologist/Social Worker, call a helpline such as the Alcohol and Drug Information Services QLD.


QPS have support services available to you –