Department of Population and Quantitative Health Sciences, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine
Behavioral Medicine | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Epidemiology | Preventive Medicine | Psychiatry and Psychology | Substance Abuse and Addiction
OBJECTIVES: We compared discrete time measures with trajectories of adolescent drinking frequency as predictors of sustained binge drinking in young adulthood.
DESIGN: Prospective longitudinal study.
SETTING: 10 high schools in Montreal, Canada.
PARTICIPANTS: 1293 high-school students followed from mean (SD) age 12 (0.6) to 24 (0.7) years.
PRIMARY OUTCOME MEASURES: Patterns of drinking frequency (self-reports every 3 months from ages 12 to 17) identified using group-based trajectory modelling. Sustained binge drinking was defined as binging monthly or more often at both ages 20 and 24.
ANALYSES: Using logistic regression, sustained binge drinking was regressed on trajectory group membership and on four discrete time measures (frequency of drinking at age 12; frequency of drinking at age 17; age at drinking onset; age at onset of drinking monthly or more often).
RESULTS: We identified seven drinking trajectories: late triers (15.2%), decreasers (9.5%), late escalators (10.4%), early slow escalators (16.5%), steady drinkers (14.4%), early rapid escalators (15.8%) and early frequent drinkers (18.2%). Sustained binge drinking was reported by 260 of 787 participants (33.0%) with complete data at both ages 20 and 24. Decreasers did not differ from late triers; all other patterns were associated with higher odds of sustained binge drinking (adjusted ORs: AORs=1.4-17.0). All discrete time measures were associated with sustained binge drinking, notably frequency at age 12 (a bit to try and drinking monthly: (AORs=2.6 (1.7; 3.9) and 2.8 (1.3; 6.1), respectively), age of drinking onset < 13 years (AOR=7.6 (3.0; 24.1)), and any age of onset of drinking monthly or more often (AORs=5.1-8.2).
CONCLUSION: Youth at risk of sustained binge drinking as young adults can be identified with indicators of early drinking as early as 7th grade (aged 12-13 years). Identification of easy-to-obtain indicators can facilitate screening and intervention efforts.
binge drinking, adolescents, epidemiology, preventive medicine, public health
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DOI of Published Version
Sylvestre MP, Wellman RJ, Ahun MN, Datta G, Jutras-Aswad D, O Loughlin J. Discrete time measures versus trajectories of drinking frequency across adolescence as predictors of binge drinking in young adulthood: a longitudinal investigation. BMJ Open. 2020 Sep 23;10(9):e035939. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2019-035939. PMID: 32967870; PMCID: PMC7513599. Link to article on publisher's site
Sylvestre M, Wellman RJ, Ahun MN, Datta G, Jutras-Aswad D, O Loughlin J. (2020). Discrete time measures versus trajectories of drinking frequency across adolescence as predictors of binge drinking in young adulthood: a longitudinal investigation. Open Access Articles. https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2019-035939. Retrieved from https://escholarship.umassmed.edu/oapubs/4349
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