Monitoring the stability of risk factors for adolescent cannabis use
Hallgren, M., & Kallmén, H. (2014). Monitoring the stability of risk factors for adolescent cannabis use. The International Journal Of Alcohol And Drug Research, 3(4), 235-243. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.7895/ijadr.v3i4.184
Aims: To identify factors associated with repeated cannabis use among Swedish adolescents aged 15 and 17 years and assess the stability of these factors over time, in the context of rising cannabis use and recent socio-economic changes.
Design: Two cross-sectional surveys completed in 2006 and 2012 are compared.
Setting: Secondary schools in Stockholm, Sweden.
Participants: 15- and 17-year-old secondary-school students surveyed in 2006 (n = 11,895) and 2012 (n = 13,004). Response rates were 76% and 77%, respectively.
Measures: Bivariate and multivariate analyses of the Stockholm Student Survey identified associations between repeated cannabis use (2 to 4 times or more) and 20 presumed risk factors.
Findings: Despite socio-economic changes in Sweden and recent increases in cannabis use, the factors associated with repeated cannabis use among adolescents have remained stable in recent years. Four key variables were identified in both survey years: having drug-using friends, cigarette smoking, early alcohol debut, and high drug availability.
Conclusions: Multi-component prevention strategies that ameliorate peer influences on drug taking and reduce cigarette smoking are highly recommended. Preventing the initiation of alcohol consumption at an early age and reducing drug availability may also reduce the risk of cannabis use.
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