The research, released by the Salvation Army on Monday, also revealed that in the past year, problem drinking had caused disruptions in more than three million Australian families.
Meanwhile, 1.4 million people reported that someone in their immediate or extended family was not able to undertake normal social activities due to alcohol use.
The Salvation Army's clinical director of recovery services, Gerard Byrne, said the findings were alarming.
"Alcohol is the most widely used and widely accepted drug in today's society and yet we know people will often drink harmful - without even considering its impacts," Mr Byrne said in a statement.
"Many people who seek assistance from the Salvation Army state that alcohol has been a central or contributing factor to their situation."
The Roy Morgan telephone survey of more than 1500 Australians aged 14 and over was released as part of the Salvation Army's Alcohol Awareness campaign, which this year had a clear message, Mr Byrne said.
"We are simply asking people to consider their drinking choices and to reflect on how their abuse of alcohol affects themselves and others," he said.
"As this new research shows, many children are ultimately paying the cost due to alcohol abuse by a family member or family members."