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Longitudinal Study: LSAC
Title: The Relationship Between Parent Drinking and Adolescent Drinking: Differences for Mothers and Fathers and Boys and Girls.
Authors: Homel, J. 
Warren, D.A. 
Warren, D 
Homel, J 
Publication Date: 24-Jan-2019
Keywords: Australian adolescents alcohol parents
Abstract: Background: Gender differences in the relationship between parent drinking and adolescent drinking are poorly understood. As parental alcohol use is a primary early exposure to alcohol for adolescents, it is important to understand how consequences may differ for adolescent males and females. Objectives: The aim of this paper was to examine gender differences in the relationship between mother’s and father’s heavy episodic drinking, and its combination, and adolescent drinking. Methods: The sample included 2,800 14–15 year olds (48.9% female) living in two-parent households from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children. The adolescent outcome measure was having had an alcoholic drink in the past year. Mothers and fathers self-reported their frequency of heavy episodic drinking. Covariates included parents’ education, smoking, non-English-speaking background, and symptoms of psychological distress. Logistic regression was used to examine the hypotheses. Results: After adjustment for covariates, both mothers’ and fathers’ heavy episodic drinking significantly increased the likelihood of adolescent drinking. Moreover, fathers’ heavy drinking was more strongly related to adolescent drinking for girls. However, there were no gender differences in the relationship between mothers’ drinking and adolescent drinking, and the combination of mothers’ and fathers’ drinking was not more risky than heavy drinking in either parent alone. Conclusions: Parent heavy episodic drinking is a risk factor for adolescent drinking, after controlling for potential confounding variables. Results suggest that girls may be especially vulnerable to parent heavy drinking in early adolescence. This variation should be considered in the design and evaluation of family-based interventions to prevent adolescent drinking.
Keywords: Gender; Health -- Addictive behaviours
Research collection: Journal Articles
Appears in Collections:Journal Articles

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