A study from Denmark examined whether young people with parental alcohol problems have different drinking patterns than those without parental alcohol problems. Further, the researchers examined whether the association between parental alcohol problems and young people’s drinking patterns differed depending on the gender of the child and the parent, and whether more severe parental alcohol problems and cohabitation with the parent with alcohol problems was associated with earlier and heavier drinking patterns.
Data was drawn from the Danish National Youth Study 2014, a web-based national survey. 75,025 high school and vocational school students (15-25years) participated. Drinking patterns were investigated by the following outcomes: non-drinking, weekly alcohol consumption, frequent binge drinking, and early intoxication debut age. The main predictor variables were perceived parental alcohol problems, gender of the parent with alcohol problems, cohabitation with a parent with alcohol problems and severity of the parents’ alcohol problems.
Young people with parental alcohol problems had a higher weekly alcohol consumption (boys: 15.2 vs. 13.9 drinks per week; girls: 11.6 vs. 10.2 drinks per week), higher odds of early intoxication debut age (boys: OR=1.68 [95%CI 1.50-1.89]; girls: OR 1.95 [95%CI 1.79-2.14]), and more frequent binge drinking (boys, OR=1.16 [95%CI 1.04-1.29]; girls, OR=1.21 [95%CI 1.11-1.32]) compared to young people without parental alcohol problems.
In conclusion, young people with perceived parental alcohol problems have an earlier intoxication debut age, binge drink more frequently, and drink larger quantities per week than young people without perceived parental alcohol problems.
Source: Perceived parental alcohol problems and drinking patterns in youth: A cross-sectional study of 69,030 secondary education students in Denmark.Pisinger VS, Holst CA, Bendtsen P, Becker U, Tolstrup JS. Eur J Epidemiol. 2017 Jan 17.