HOW CHILDHOOD FACTORS AMPLIFY RISKS OF HEAVY ALCOHOL USE

Project: Research project

Project Details

Description

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DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The major goals of the proposed study are to study longitudinal effects of heavy alcohol use in adolescence, and to identify childhood and adolescent risk factors that amplify or minimize the impact of heavy drinking on adult status attainment, family roles, and health. Based on a life span developmental perspective on the etiology and consequences of alcohol use, this proposal seeks funds to conduct secondary data analyses on two ongoing national longitudinal studies of British individuals who have been followed from birth through midlife. Specific aims are: (1) to identify child and adolescent risk factors (e.g., social disadvantage, family relations, academic performance) that predict heavy alcohol use in adolescence and trajectories of alcohol use from adolescence through middle adulthood; (2) to examine early and middle adult consequences of heavy alcohol use during adolescence, focusing on adult status attainment in education and employment, family roles, and physical and psychological health; and (3) to identify childhood and adolescent factors that amplify or minimize (moderate) the impact of adolescent heavy drinking on status attainment, family roles, and health in adulthood. The National Child Development Study and the British Cohort Study represent unparalleled scientific resources combining major methodological strengths: nationally representative samples including a full range of socio-economic backgrounds; longitudinal designs with strong retention from birth through midlife; and multi-informant and multi-method data, including reports from parents, teachers, and participants, as well as cognitive tests, medical assessments, and national exam data. Early risk is hypothesized to increase the likelihood of experiencing alcohol-related harm in the domains of status attainment, family roles, and physical and psychological health. In particular, children with greater sociodemographic, family, and individual risk are expected to be more vulnerable to the risks of adolescent heavy drinking as they will have less human, social, and personal capital to serve as psychosocial resources during development. Primary analytic strategies will be multiple regression, longitudinal multi-level models, and causal analyses using propensity scores. The research has direct relevance for alcohol use etiology and for social policy, by identifying characteristics of individuals most likely to benefit from preventive and other assistance during the transition to adulthood. [unreadable]
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StatusFinished
Effective start/end date4/1/063/31/07

Funding

  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism: $202,190.00

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