Prediction of alcohol-related harm from controlled drinking strategies and alcohol consumption trajectories

Toumbourou, John, Williams, I. R., White, V. M., Snow, P. C., Munro, G. D. and Schofield, P. E. 2004, Prediction of alcohol-related harm from controlled drinking strategies and alcohol consumption trajectories, Addiction, vol. 99, no. 4, pp. 498-508, doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2004.00689.x.

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Title Prediction of alcohol-related harm from controlled drinking strategies and alcohol consumption trajectories
Author(s) Toumbourou, JohnORCID iD for Toumbourou, John
Williams, I. R.
White, V. M.
Snow, P. C.
Munro, G. D.
Schofield, P. E.
Journal name Addiction
Volume number 99
Issue number 4
Start page 498
End page 508
Publisher Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Place of publication Abingdon, England
Publication date 2004
ISSN 0965-2140
Keyword(s) adolescence
alcohol abuse
alcohol drinking patterns
health behavior
substance abuse prevention
Summary Aims To establish predictors of age 21 alcohol-related harm from prior drinking patterns, current levels of alcohol consumption and use of controlled drinking strategies.

Participants One thousand, five hundred and ninety-six students recruited from an initial sample of 3300 during their final year of high school in 1993.

Design Longitudinal follow-up across five waves of data collection.

Setting Post high school in Victoria, Australia.

Measurements Self-administered surveys examining a range of health behaviours, including alcohol consumption patterns and related behaviour.

Findings Drinking behaviours at age 21 were found to be strongly predicted by drinking trajectories established through the transition from high school. Multivariate regression analysis revealed that alcohol-related harms at age 21 were reduced where current levels of alcohol use fell within limits recommended in Australian national guidelines. After controlling for this effect it was found that the range of strategies employed by participants to control alcohol use maintained a small protective influence. Post-high-school drinking trajectories continued to demonstrate a significant effect after controlling for current behaviours. Findings revealed that over one quarter of males and females drank alcohol, but on a less-than-weekly basis. This pattern of alcohol use demonstrated considerable stability through the post-school transition and was associated with a low level of subsequent harm at age 21.

Conclusions Future research should investigate whether encouraging more Australian adolescents to drink alcohol on a less-than-weekly basis may be a practical intervention target for reducing alcohol-related harms.
Notes Published Online: 25 Mar 2004
Language eng
DOI 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2004.00689.x
Field of Research 179999 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2004, Society for the Study of Addiction
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
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