Author(s): Epstein JA, Griffin KW, Botvin GJ
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: Social influences to drink are important predictors of adolescent drinking. This study explored a social influence model of drinking among inner-city adolescents. We examined the role of family drinking and perceived drinking norms in predicting 1-year follow-up perceived social benefits of drinking and the relationship of perceived social benefits of drinking with 2-year follow-up adolescent drinking. METHOD: Participants in the present study were from the control schools of a randomized trial investigating the etiology and prevention of adolescent alcohol use. During a class period at baseline in seventh grade, participants completed a questionnaire that measured self-reported alcohol use and potential predictors. The panel sample consisted of 1,318 students from baseline (seventh grade), 1-year follow-up (eighth grade), and 2-year follow-up (ninth grade). RESULTS: Structural equation modeling found that both family drinking and perceived drinking norms affected the perceived benefits of drinking. In turn, the perceived benefits of drinking predicted subsequent drinking, controlling for earlier drinking. CONCLUSIONS: These results illuminate the importance of the perceived benefits of drinking, as well as social influences to drink, in adolescent drinking. Therefore, they should be incorporated into alcohol prevention programs.
This article was published in J Stud Alcohol Drugs
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy