Self-reported alcohol consumption and the risk of alcohol-related problems: A comparative risk-curve analysis of the three Baltic countries, Sweden and Italy
2012 (English)In: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, ISSN 0145-6008, E-ISSN 1530-0277, Vol. 36, no 1, 113-118 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Background: Previous research has suggested a positive risk-relationship between volume of consumption and adverse behavioural and social consequences of drinking. However, because the risk-relationship may be modified by factors such as pattern of drinking, attributes of social drinking contexts and drunken comportment, the shape of the risk-function appear to be contingent upon the larger cultural context of drinking. Methods: In this paper I use graphical risk-curve analyses and model estimations to assess how the risk of experiencing alcohol-related problems is associated with self-reported volume of alcohol consumption in the three Baltic countries; Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania as well as Sweden and Italy. The rationale behind the choice of countries was to obtain a basis for comparing the risk curves for the Baltic countries with the risk-curves for two countries representing distinct types of the western European drinking cultures. The analyses utilised data from two general population surveys (including Sweden plus Italy and the Baltic countries, respectively) with approximately 1000 respondents from each country. Results: The slopes of the risk-curves for the Baltic countries were generally parallel to those of for Sweden, but significantly steeper than for Italy. This result suggests that (i) the risk for alcohol-related problems in the Baltic countries increases with volume of consumption in a way that is similar to northern Europe, and (ii) that increasing volume of consumption is associated with a considerably higher risk of experiencing alcohol-related problems in the Baltic countries (and Sweden) than in Italy. The result also suggests that increasing volume of consumption is associated with the risk of experiencing a larger number of different problems in the Baltic countries and Sweden than in Italy. Conclusions: The results were in line with the hypothesis of a European north to south gradient in the strength of the risk-relationship, but also add that the Baltic countries may be placed alongside the Nordic countries in this context. Since only volume of consumption is considered, the results cannot be used to specify which factors and mechanisms that actually modify the shape of the risk-function in each culture.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 36, no 1, 113-118 p.
Self-reported volume of consumption, alcohol-related problems, graphical risk-curve analyses, the Baltic countries
Research subject Sociology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-58301DOI: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01597.xISI: 000298730200014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-58301DiVA: diva2:419925
ProjectsAlcohol in Eastern Europe - A public health perspective
FunderForte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare