Motives for drinking, alcohol consumption, and alcohol-related consequences in a Vancouver youth sample




McIntosh, Kimberly Ann

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This longitudinal investigation examined motives for alcohol use, alcohol consumption, and alcohol-related consequences in a Vancouver, British Columbia youth sample (n = 405). Secondary analyses were performed on data that were collected at two time points (1995-1996 and 2003-2004). Sociodemographic variables included age, gender, adoption status, parent education, household moves, and family net worth. Bivariate correlations and structural equation modeling were used to examine associations between social, enhancement, and coping motives, alcohol consumption and alcohol-related consequences. The social motives included drinking to be sociable and drinking to add to the enjoyment of meals. Enhancement motives included drinking to feel good. Coping motives included: drinking to help you relax, drinking to forget worries, and drinking to feel less shy and inhibited. In the final longitudinal structural equation model combining T1 motives and both T1 and T2 alcohol consumption and alcohol-related consequences, results showed endorsement at T1 of drinking to forget worries was predictive of the alcohol-related consequences latent factor at T1. Moreover, T1 consequences were predictive of alcohol-related consequences at T2. The data show a positive relationship between T1 endorsement of drinking to feel good and the alcohol consumption latent variables at both T1 and T2, but no relationship between drinking to feel good and the alcohol-related consequences emerged. Additionally, the data yielded a negative relationship between the variable, “drink to be sociable” and the alcohol-related consequences latent factor at T1. Certain self-identified motives for drinking may be risk factors for continued alcohol use and subsequent misuse. Therefore, differentiating between specific motives for alcohol use may be a helpful marker for Child and Youth Care workers and other professionals to initiate conversations about alcohol use and consequences.



adolescence, alcohol use, drinking motives, alcohol-related consequences