Text message bid to help tackle booze

A PROJECT using text messages to tackle binge drinking among men living in deprived areas is to be trialled in Glasgow.

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Researchers at Glasgow Caledonian University are seeking to recruit men aged between 25 and 44 as part of the scheme.

Those taking part will receive regular mobile phone text and photo messages warning them about their level of drinking.

Dr Carol Emslie, Leader of the Substance Use and Misuse Research Group in GCU's Institute for Applied Health Institute, will begin recruiting men in March.

She said: "This is a timely project, given that alcohol-related death rates doubled for men in Scotland in this age group between 1991 and 2009. Sending text messages is a low cost way to attempt to reduce drinking among men living in deprived areas."

Men who join the study will get regular text and photo messages for three months.

They will also be told of the benefits that can come from changing their habits.

After that there will be a phone interview to assess whether their attitudes have changed.

They will be asked again nine months later whether there has been any longer-term adjustments in behaviour.

Letters of invitation to join the study will be sent out from GP practices while the study team will also be going out into the community to recruit volunteers.

The Texting to Reduce Alcohol Misuse project, funded by the National Institute for Health Research Public Health Research (NIHR PHR) Programme, hopes to recruit around 700 men.

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