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Public Library of Science
Background Alcohol use is a global health issue and may influence activity performance in a variety of domains, including the occupational and domestic spheres. The aim of the study was to examine the influence of annual drinking frequency and binge drinking (≥6 units at one occasion) on activity impairments both at work (sickness presenteeism) and outside the workplace. Methods Employees (n = 3278), recruited from 14 Norwegian private and public companies, responded to a questionnaire containing questions from the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test (AUDIT) and the Workplace Productivity and Activity Impairment questionnaire (WPAI). Results Multiple hierarchical regression analyses revealed that binge drinking was associated with both sickness presenteeism and impaired daily activities, even after controlling for gender, age, educational level, living status and employment sector. Annual drinking frequency was associated with impaired daily activities, but not sickness presenteeism. Conclusions Binge drinking seems to have a stronger influence on activity performance both at work and outside the workplace than drinking frequency. Interventions targeting alcohol consumption should benefit from focusing on binge drinking behavior.