The present study investigated the longitudinal relationship between alcohol consumption at age 13, and at age 16. Alcohol-specific measures were frequency of drinking, amount consumed at last use and alcohol related harms. Self-report data were gathered from 1113 high school students at T1, and 981 students at T2. Socio-demographic data were gathered, as was information on context of use, alcohol-related knowledge and attitudes, four domains of aggression and delay reward discounting. Results indicated that any consumption of alcohol, even supervised consumption, at T1 was associated with significantly poorer outcomes at T2. In other words, compared to those still abstinent at age 13, those engaging in alcohol use in any context reported significantly more frequent drinking, more alcohol-related harms and more units consumed at last use at age 16. Results also support the relationship between higher levels of physical aggression at T1 and a greater likelihood of more problematic alcohol use behaviours at T2. The findings support other evidence suggesting that abstinence in early adolescence has better longitudinal outcomes that supervised consumption of alcohol. These results suggest support for current guidance on adolescent drinking in the United Kingdom (UK).
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||International Journal of Child and Adolescent Health|
|Publication status||Published - 2015|
McKay, M. T., Dempster, M., & Cole, J. C. (2015). Abstinence from alcohol may indeed be the best policy: 32 month longitudinal outcomes among adolescents in the United Kingdom. International Journal of Child and Adolescent Health, 8(2), 221-230. https://www.novapublishers.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=54484