Mediation by Depression of Sexual Orientation Disparities in Substance Use among Hispanic/Latino Emerging Adults in Los Angeles: A Longitudinal Analysis
Methods: Data were collected from a longitudinal project that followed Hispanic youth in the Los Angeles area from 2005 to 2015. Our current study focuses on surveys completed during participants’ emerging adulthood, which included 1020 subjects in the analytic sample. Multivariate logistic regression models were fitted to examine the association between sexual orientation and substance use patterns. Mediation by depression in the observed disparities was evaluated using a bootstrapping approach.
Results: Among Hispanic emerging adults, LGB individuals were more likely to report past-30-day cigarette use (adjusted odds ratio (aOR)=2.29, 95% CI=1.38-3.79), past-30-day binge drinking (aOR=1.84, 95% CI= 1.14-2.98), lifetime (aOR=1.96, 95% CI= 1.08-3.53) and past-30-day (aOR=2.20, 95% CI= 1.36-3.57) marijuana use, and lifetime use of other illicit drugs (aOR=1.94, 95% CI= 1.21-3.12) compared to heterosexual youth. Notably, bisexuals showed even higher risks in the aforementioned associations. Depressive symptoms significantly mediated the sexual orientations disparities in lifetime (adjusted bias-corrected (BC) bootstrap 95% CI=0.0004-0.0728) and past-30-day (adjusted BC 95% CI=0.0012-0.0612) marijuana use, as well as lifetime use of other illicit drugs (adjusted BC 95% CI=0.0119-0.1172).
Conclusion: Depression partially mediated the associations between sexual orientation and substance use among Hispanic emerging adults. Future studies are needed to determine how youth who are both sexual minorities and ethnic minorities can develop resilience skills to cope with stress without experiencing depression and/or resorting to substance use.
Keywords: Depression, Sexual orientation, Substance use, Hispanic, Emerging adults
Learning Areas:Diversity and culture
Social and behavioral sciences
Evaluate the mediation effect of depression in the association between sexual orientation and substance use among Hispanic emerging adults.
Keyword(s): Depression, Youth
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been a researcher in the area of behavioral science and epidemiology for years. My professional knowledge and research experience in the past focusing on mental disorders, acculturation, and substance use among minorities make me a qualified abstract author for this topic.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
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