Prevalence of High-Intensity Drinking from Adolescence through Young Adulthood: National Data from 2016-2017

Megan E. Patrick, Yvonne M. Terry-McElrath

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    43 Scopus citations

    Abstract

    High-intensity drinking (HID; ie, having 10+ drinks in a row) is a recognized public health concern due to the individual and public risks (eg, alcohol-related injuries, alcohol poisoning, memory loss, sexual risk) associated with consumption of a large quantity of alcohol over a relatively short time period. Using nationally representative samples of US 8th, 10th, and 12th grade students, and follow-up of subsamples of 12th graders, we present overall and sex-specific prevalence estimates of past 2-week HID from 29 966 individuals at the modal ages of 14 to 30 in 2016-2017. Similar data for the more commonly studied measure of binge drinking (having 5+ drinks in a row) is provided for comparison. HID prevalence ranged from 1% to 11.5% and was significantly higher for males than females at all ages other than modal age 14 (8th grade). Binge drinking prevalence ranged from 3.5% to 32.5%; males reported a higher prevalence than females at approximately half of the ages examined. Peak binge drinking and HID age for males was earlier (modal age 21/22) than that for females (modal age 21-24 for binge drinking and 25/26 for HID). The observed rapid increase in HID from adolescence through the early to mid-20s highlights the importance of prevention and intervention efforts targeted to these ages.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    JournalSubstance Abuse: Research and Treatment
    Volume13
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    FuNDINg: The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Development of this manuscript was supported by the research grant R01AA023504 to M.E.P. from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Data collection and manuscript preparation were supported by the research grants R01DA001411 and R01DA016575 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The study sponsors had no role in the study design, collection, analysis, or interpretation of the data, writing of the manuscript, or the decision to submit the paper for publication. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the study sponsor.

    Funding Information:
    The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: Development of this manuscript was supported by the research grant R01AA023504 to M.E.P. from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Data collection and manuscript preparation were supported by the research grants R01DA001411 and R01DA016575 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The study sponsors had no role in the study design, collection, analysis, or interpretation of the data, writing of the manuscript, or the decision to submit the paper for publication. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the study sponsor.

    Publisher Copyright:
    © The Author(s) 2019.

    Keywords

    • Binge drinking
    • adolescent
    • alcohol
    • gender
    • high-intensity drinking
    • sex
    • young adult

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