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Normalization of Non-Drinking? Health, School Situation and Social Relations among Swedish Ninth Graders That Drink and Do Not Drink Alcohol

Version 2 2024-06-15, 07:02
Version 1 2023-02-28, 03:43
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-15, 07:02 authored by Jonas Raninen, Peter Larm, Johan Svensson, Michael Livingston, Lars Sjoedin, Patrik Karlsson
Alcohol consumption is a major contributor to the disease burden among adolescents. The adolescent alcohol abstainer is still often depicted as problematic in the research literature and in prominent theoretical frameworks. However, over the past two decades, there has been a marked trend of declining youth drinking in Sweden. The declining trend has led to a shift in the majority behaviour of youth, from drinking to non-drinking. It is plausible that this trend has also shifted the position of non-drinkers. This paper examines the position of non-drinkers in a nationally representative sample of Swedish adolescents. A survey was carried out in 2017 in 500 randomly selected schools. A total of 5549 respondents (15–16-year-olds) agreed to participate and answered the questionnaire. A minority (42.8%) had consumed alcohol during their lifetime. The results show that non-drinkers had better health and school performance when compared to drinkers. The results also showed that there were no differences in the social position between non-drinkers and drinkers. These findings are new and indicate a changed position of non-drinkers among Swedish adolescents. With non-drinking being the majority behaviour among Swedish adolescents this seems to have shifted the position of non-drinkers. There is a need for research on the long-term importance of not drinking during adolescence.

History

Journal

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND PUBLIC HEALTH

Volume

18

Article number

ARTN 11201

Location

Switzerland

ISSN

1661-7827

eISSN

1660-4601

Language

English

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Issue

21

Publisher

MDPI