Personality Traits and Drinking Motives Predict Alcohol Misuse Among Canadian Aboriginal Youth

Article (PDF Available)inInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction ISSN(3):1557-1874 · August 2013with 224 Reads
DOI: 10.1007/s11469-013-9451-4
Abstract
This study tested the association between personality traits (i.e., anxiety sensitivity, sensation seeking, impulsivity, and hopelessness; as measured by the Substance Use Risk Profile Scale (Woicik et al. in Addictive Behaviors 34:1042–1055, 2009)), drinking motives (i.e., enhancement, social, coping, and conformity; as measured by the Drinking Motives Questionnaire—Revised (Cooper in Psychological Assessment 6:117–128, 1994)), and problematic patterns of alcohol use in 191 Canadian Aboriginal youth. Confirmatory factor analyses provided support for a three-factor model of drinking motives. Hierarchical regression analyses demonstrated that personality traits independently predicted motives for alcohol use: anxiety sensitivity predicted conformity motivated drinking; sensation seeking and impulsivity predicted enhancement motivated drinking; and hopelessness predicted coping motivated drinking. In addition, personality traits and drinking motives predicted problematic patterns of alcohol misuse: sensation seeking, hopelessness, and enhancement motives predicted heavy episodic drinking, while all personality traits and all drinking motives (save conformity) predicted alcohol-related problems. These findings suggest that specific personality traits in Canadian Aboriginal youth can explain specific reasons for drinking and may represent appropriate targets for intervention.
  • ... Sensation seeking is defined as the general need for adventure and excitement, the preference for unforeseeable situations and friends, and the willingness to take risks simply for the experience of living them. Many studies have observed higher scores in binge drinkers in bothImpulsivity (11, 12, 26, 27, 29) and Sensation seeking(12,16,22,25,26,30,31,34), when compared with non-binge drinkers. Both traits are considered risk factors for lifetime, whose joint presence has been labeled as " disinhibited personality " (18), although they are especially present in adolescence, characterized by increased impulsive decision making and behavior (40). ...
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  • ... Different models have been utilized to understand alcohol use behavior among adolescents. This research applied the drinking motives model which categorizes motivation along two pathways reflecting the valence (positive or negative) and source (internal or external) of the desired outcomes of alcohol use (Cooper, 1994; Cox & Klinger, 1988; Mushquash, Stewart, Mushquash, Comeau, & McGrath, 2014 ). Crossing these two pathways yields four classes of drinking motives: 1. enhancement or internal positive reinforcement (drinking to bring about positive mood), 2. social or external positive reinforcement (drinking to obtain positive social rewards), 3. coping or internal negative reinforcement (drinking to reduce or regulate negative emotions), and 4. conformity or external negative reinforcement (drinking to avoid social censure or rejection) (Cooper, 1994). ...
    ... One study of Canadian First Nations adolescents supported three of the model's four motives for drinking, including stress, depression (coping), friends use it or to fit in (conformity), and boredom or to " get high " (enhancement); however, social motives did not spontaneously emerge (Mushquash, Stewart, Comeau, & McGrath, 2008). Gaining a deeper understanding of AI adolescent motives for alcohol use and binge drinking has several important clinical and research implications, including (a) to elucidate a unique profile of contextual antecedents and drinking-related consequences, (b) to determine which motives predict problem drinking, and (c) to differentiate adolescents whose drinking problems may be fleeting versus those that may lead to addiction (Cooper, 1994; Mushquash et al., 2014 ). Furthermore, the drinking motives model has been reliably identified among adolescents of varied ethnicities (Kuntsche et al., 2008). ...
    ... Furthermore, the drinking motives model has been reliably identified among adolescents of varied ethnicities (Kuntsche et al., 2008). If the model can be generalized to AI adolescents, existing interventions targeting the four classes of drinking motives may be suitable for adaptation and uptake by AI communities (Conrod, Stewart, Comeau, & Maclean, 2006; Kuntsche et al., 2008; Mushquash et al., 2014). In addition to individual motivations, it is essential to consider family and peer influences on AI adolescent alcohol use and specifically binge behavior. ...
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  • ... Finally, given that school-based surveys are subject to coverage errors, the generalizability of our findings is questionable, since substance use rates have been shown to be higher among adolescents whose school attendance is irregular (Chou et al., 2006). Despite these limitations, and although there is still a need to examine potential mediators of the associations observed, [including individual factors such as motives (Chandley et al., 2014; Mushquash et al., 2014; Loxton et al., 2015 ), and environmental factors , notably parental practices (Raboteg-Sarí c et al., 2001; Sitnick et al., 2014; Finan et al., 2015)] , the present results provide important information on some factors that should be taken into account in tailoring new prevention and intervention approaches in France as elsewhere (Conrod et al., 2013). ...
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