An examination of risky drinking behaviors and motivations for alcohol use in a college sample

Brynn E. Sheehan, Cathy Lau-Barraco, Ashley N. Linden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: The current study examined (1) drinking motives as a mediator of risky drinking behaviors (ie, pregaming and drinking games) and alcohol-related problems and (2) whether gender moderates the association between risky drinking behaviors and negative consequences. Participants: Participants (N = 368; 68% female) were drinkers aged 18 to 25. Data were collected from September to November 2010 and January to May 2011. Methods: Participants completed measures regarding typical pregaming and drinking game alcohol consumption, drinking motives, and alcoholrelated consequences. Results: Social, coping, and enhancement motives partially explained relationships, with enhancement motives explaining the most variance for pregaming (31%) and drinking games (44%). Relationships between risky drinking and consequences were not moderated by gender. Conclusions: Drinking to enhance positive affect may be the most salient motivation for drinking related to pregaming and drinking games for college drinkers. Findings have implications for interventions tailored to students engaging in various heavy drinking practices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)444-452
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of American College Health
Volume61
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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