207557 Enhancing prediction of adolescents' alcohol use frequency and consequences with the number and types of adolescents' reasons for drinking

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Eric Vance Martin, MPA, MIS , Indiana Prevention Resource Center, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Julia Ann Swanson, MS , Applied Health Science, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Mi Kyung Jun, PhD, MPH , Applied Health Science Department, Indiana University, Boomington, IN
Ruth Gassman, PhD , Indiana Prevention Resource Center, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
Previous research indicates that adolescents' reasons for drinking alcohol predict adolescents' alcohol use. Perceived risk of harm, peer approval, and parental approval of use are well-established predictors of adolescent alcohol use. This exploratory study assessed the ability of number of reasons for drinking to predict variation in the frequency of alcohol use (drinking frequency) and number of consequences of alcohol use (consequences) beyond that explained by well-established predictors. High school students with any lifetime alcohol use (n=37,673), selected from a large convenience sample in a mid-western state, responded to alcohol-related items in a school-based survey. Predictors included number of reasons for drinking alcohol and a latent variable combining the well-established predictors named above. Latent dependent variables were drinking frequency and consequences. Regression analyses confirmed the significance of predictors. Structural Equation Modeling produced a path model with acceptable fit (RMSEA=.06, NNFI=.99, IFI=.99, CFI=.99). Based on their similarity to reasons described in previous research, reasons for drinking in our instrument were assigned to a typology of motives (common underlying dimensions of reasons): experiential, conformity, social, coping, enhancement, and an additional category of coping reasons associated with the highest frequency of drinking. Relationships between drinking frequency and these motives were explored. Alternate path models using number of motives instead of number of reasons also demonstrated acceptable fit. More frequent drinkers had more reasons and more motives. The results suggest that both number of reasons and number of motives predict variation in drinking frequency and consequences beyond that explained by well-established predictors.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify specific reasons for drinking alcohol and consequences of drinking alcohol that are associated with alcohol-use frequency among adolescents. 2. Evaluate the scope of motives that may influence adolescentsí alcohol-use frequency. 3. Discuss the implications for alcohol-related risk assessment and intervention of the addition of number of drinking reasons or motives to more typically studied predictors of adolescent alcohol use and consequences.

Keywords: Alcohol Use, Adolescents

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: In addition to several years of work doing technical assistance in substance abuse prevention, I conducted some of the initial analyses and wrote sections of the monograph reporting the original survey data upon which this study is based. I am currently a Ph.D. student in Health Behavior.
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.