Alcohol-related mortality

Updated: 17 Dec 2018
Next update: 16 Dec 2019

Alcohol-related diseases include all diseases in the classification of diseases that are caused by alcohol (categories F10, G312, G4051, G621, G721, I426, K292, K70, K852, K860, O354, P043, Q860 in the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, ICD-10).

Accidental poisonings by alcohol are poisoning deaths caused by alcohol or a similar substitute (category X45).

The statistics on causes of death cover the persons who have died in Finland or abroad during the calendar year and who at the time of death were domiciled in Finland.


Number of persons that died from alcohol decreased in 2017

Compared to the previous year, the number of persons that died from alcohol-related causes decreased in 2017. Just under 1,600 persons died from alcohol, which was almost 200 persons fewer than in 2016.

Alcohol mortality has decreased in recent years, especially in younger age groups. In contrast, alcohol mortality among women aged 65 and over and men aged 75 and over has increased during the past five years. The majority of persons who died of alcohol-related causes are still of working age but the share of persons aged over 65 has grown from 17 to 37 per cent over the past ten years. In 2017, the average age for men who died of alcohol-related causes was 61 years and that of women 62 years.

The number of deaths from alcohol has followed the changes in alcohol consumption, even though alcohol-related deaths usually call for long-term harmful use of alcohol that lasts for several years. Several different alcohol-related diseases used as primary causes of death and accidental alcohol poisonings have been collected into alcohol-related causes of death. Diseases related to alcohol use, such as liver and heart diseases, cause a majority of deaths from alcohol-related causes. The share of alcohol poisonings in deaths from alcohol-related causes has decreased from 26 to 14 per cent over a ten-year period. In 2017, altogether 213 persons died from alcohol poisoning.