Longitudinal consequences of adolescent alcohol use under different policy contexts in Australia and the United States

Jennifer A. Bailey, Marina Epstein, Richard F. Catalano, Barbara J. McMorris, Jessica A. Heerde, Elizabeth Clancy, Bosco Rowland, John W. Toumbourou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To test the premise that youth alcohol harm minimization policies (compared with abstinence policies) reduce later drinking and harmful consequences of alcohol use in young adulthood, we compared associations among adolescent alcohol use, young adult alcohol consumption, and alcohol-related harms in Victoria, Australia and Washington State, United States.

METHOD: Data came from the International Youth Development Study, a longitudinal, cross-national study of the development of substance use. State-representative samples of seventh-grade (age 13) students in Victoria (n = 984, 53% female, 90% White) and Washington (n = 961, 54% female, 73% White) were surveyed in 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2014 (age 25). Participants self-reported alcohol initiation by age 15 and age 25 alcohol consumption (per the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test). Path modeling tested associations among age 15 alcohol use, age 25 consumption, and alcohol-related harms at age 25; multiple group modeling tested the equivalence of parameter estimates across states.

RESULTS: Age 25 alcohol consumption was lower in Washington versus Victoria and was associated with poor physical and mental health, partner conflict, substance use, criminal behavior, and violence exposure in both states equally. Living in Washington predicted lower levels of multiple alcohol-related harms at age 25 indirectly via lower age 25 alcohol consumption.

CONCLUSIONS: Young adults growing up in Victoria reported greater alcohol consumption in young adulthood, which was associated to the same degree with the harms measured regardless of alcohol policy context. Findings support state-level policies that promote alcohol abstinence in adolescence and reduced consumption in young adulthood.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)377-386
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of studies on alcohol and drugs
Volume82
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This article wassupported by grants from theAustralian National Health and Medical Research Council (APP1047902), the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01DA012140), and the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (R01AA025029). The funding agencies had no role in the design of the study; collection, analysis, or interpretation of data; the writing of this report; or the decision to submit this manuscript for publication. Conclusionsreflect the points of viewof theauthors and not the funding agencies. The authors have no conflicts to declare. An earlier version of this research was presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Prevention Research in Washington, DC, May 29–June 1, 2018. *Correspondence may besenttoJenniferA. Baileyatthe SocialDevelop-ment Research Group, University of Washington, Seattle, 9725 3rd Avenue NE, Suite 401, Seattle, WA 98115, or via email at: jabailey@uw.edu.

Funding Information:
This article was supported by grants from the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (APP1047902), the U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse (R01DA012140), and the U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (R01AA025029). The funding agencies had no role in the design of the study; collection, analysis, or interpretation of data; the writing of this report; or the decision to submit this manuscript for publication. Conclusions reflect the points of view of the authors and not the funding agencies. The authors have no conflicts to declare. An earlier version of this research was presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Prevention Research in Washington, DC, May 29?June 1, 2018. The authors gratefully acknowledge the generosity of the participants in the International Youth Development Study, the dedication of the data collection teams in Australia and the United States, and the editorial contribution of Tanya M. Williams.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Alcohol Research Documentation Inc.. All rights reserved.

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

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