The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4094.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - Board 4

Abstract #40106

Relationship between health behaviors and alcohol use among adolescents

Rhonda L. Bledsoe, MPH, CHES, Chudley E. Werch, PhD, Deborah M. Owen, MSH, CHES, Edessa C. Jobli, MPH, CHES, Joan M. Carlson, MSW, and Michele J. Moore, PhD. Center for Drug Prevention Research, University of North Florida, 4567 St. Johns Bluff Road, South, Building 39/3042A, Jacksonville, FL 32224, 904-620-2847,

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between health behaviors and alcohol use among 447 8th grade students from two middle schools in north Florida. Health behavior measures employed in the study included physical activity, nutrition, sleep, television viewing, seatbelt and bicycle helmet use, carrying a weapon, getting into a physical fight, and riding with a driver who had been drinking. Alcohol use measures examined consisted of frequency, quantity, heavy drinking, alcohol consequences, influenceability, outcome expectancies, and peer norms. Students who carried a weapon during the past 30 days and were in a physical fight during the past 12 months had greater frequency and quantity of alcohol use (pís<.001). Students who did not exercise during the past 7 days had greater negative alcohol expectancies, whereas students who slept 8 or more hours each night had more positive alcohol expectancies (pís<.05). Students who reported riding with a driver that had been drinking during the past 30 days, carrying a weapon during the past 30 days, and getting into a physical fight during the past 12 months experienced more alcohol-related consequences and had higher positive alcohol expectancies (pís<.001). These preliminary results suggest that middle school students who engage in unhealthy behaviors are also at higher risk of drinking alcohol and experiencing alcohol related problems than students who practice healthier behaviors. Further analyses will be conducted to determine the degree to which healthy-related behavioral choices relate to alcohol consumption among adolescents.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participants will be able to

Keywords: Alcohol, Research

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Etiology and Prevention of Substance Abuse among Youth Poster Session

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA