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High-Risk Typologies for Heavy Drinking ID’d in Underage Women

Feminine norms of sexual fidelity and appearance are associated with latent trajectory classes of drinking

FRIDAY, Feb. 9, 2018 (HealthDay News) — For underage women, high-risk trajectories have been identified for heavy episodic drinking (HED), and feminine norms are associated with latent trajectory classes, according to a study published online Feb. 7 in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research.

Derek Kenji Iwamoto, Ph.D., from the University of Maryland-College Park, and colleagues used growth mixture modeling to identify latent trajectory classes of HED at three time points over the course of a year in 700 underage young adult women from a Mid-Atlantic university. Feminine norm endorsement, sorority status, perceived peer norms, expectancies, alcohol-related consequences, and marijuana use were examined as predictors of latent trajectory class.

The researchers found that 64.4 percent of women reported engaging in HED. Three latent trajectory classes were identified: high risk (31 percent), who reported weekly HED; monthly HED (33.4 percent); and abstainers (35.6 percent). Significantly more alcohol-related problems and marijuana use were reported by the high-risk class than other trajectory classes. Even after controlling for established correlates of drinking, there were significant correlations for multidimensional feminine norms of sexual fidelity and appearance with the latent trajectory classes.

“Prevention and intervention programs targeting gender-relevant factors may help reduce problematic drinking and marijuana use among underage women engaging in problematic patterns of drinking,” the authors write.

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