People are turning to alcohol to relieve the stress caused by redundancy, according to research by UK alcohol charity Drinkaware.

One in ten British adults, around 5m people, has either been made redundant or knows someone who has been made redundant in the last six months and is drinking more as a result, Drinkaware said today (10 June).

Being out of work also affects people's drinking patterns, the report said, with almost half (49%) of this group drinking more during the day.

"The country is facing one of its worst recessions in history and redundancies are making daily headlines," said Chris Sorek, CEO of Drinkaware. "Losing your job is recognised as one of the top ten most stressful life events, and many people are turning to alcohol as a coping mechanism. But alcohol is a depressant and can lead to further stress and anxiety, which can make the effects of redundancy much worse."

In February this year, Drinkaware made a GBP1m (US$1.45m) fund available for new projects to tackle alcohol misuse in the UK.

The scheme, 'Drinkaware Grants', aims to tackle the growing problem of alcohol misuse in the UK by funding new and existing alcohol education initiatives.