180109 Early onset of alcohol drinking and development of risky behaviours in late adolescence

Wednesday, October 29, 2008: 12:48 PM

Neta Peleg-Oren, PhD , Miller School of Medicine, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami, Miami, FL
Gilbert Saint-Jean, MD MPH PhD , Miller School of Medicine, University of Miami, Miami, FL
Gabriel A. Cardenas, MPH , Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Recent research has showed that those who begin drinking in early adolescence are at greater risk of engaging later in a variety of risky behaviors. Little attention has been paid, however, to underage drinking, especially among children younger than 13. This study will present analysis findings from 2 school-based data sources: the Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey (FYSAS) and the Florida Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS). FYSAS conducted among middle and high schools across Florida. YRBS was developed to monitor health risk behaviors that contribute markedly to the leading causes of death, disability, and social problems.

Participants were 56,689 adolescents in FYSAS and 4,103 adolescents in YRBS who were divided into 3 groups: no alcohol use, starting to drink at age 13 or later, and starting to drink before age 13. Chi square and logistic regression were applied to evaluate risky behaviors related to early onset of drinking among adolescents. Findings indicate that the earlier adolescents use alcohol, the more likely they will report unsafe sexual behaviors (earlier age of first intercourse, less use of condoms, forced intercourse and use alcohol during sex); and delinquent behaviors (carrying guns to schools, fighting, belonging to a gang, being arrested, and stealing cars) p <0.01 for all associations. All these results persist after controlling for socio-demographic differences between groups. Given Florida's diverse population, these results from two complimentary data sets will add strength to similar findings from the literature. The findings have implications for prevention programs, especially with students under age 13.

Learning Objectives:
1.Describe the prevalence of underage thirteen in Florida from two school-based data sources (FYSAS and YRBS). 2.Evaluate risky behaviors (unsafe sexual behaviors and delinquent behaviors) related to early onset of drinking among adolescents 3.Articulate the findings with their implications for prevention programs,especially with students under age 13.

Keywords: Adolescents, Alcohol Use

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I wrote this abstract along with my co-authors
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.