CitationStewart, Thomas Darryl & Reed, Mark B. (2015). Lifetime nonmedical use of prescription medications and socioeconomic status among young adults in the United States. The American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse. vol. 41 (5) pp. 458-464
AbstractBACKGROUND: Despite decreases in the use of illicit drugs in the United States, prescription medications have become a major category of substances used by young adults. OBJECTIVE: This study examines the relationship between the socioeconomic status (SES) of young adult respondents (ages 24-32) and their history of nonmedical use of prescription medications (NUPM). METHOD: A secondary analysis was conducted with nationally representative data gathered from several waves (n = 15 701) of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). Four categories of NUPM were examined: (i) sedatives; (ii) tranquilizers; (iii) stimulants; and (iv) pain killers. SES was defined by several measures in the Add Health survey. Given the complex sampling plan of the Add Health, all analyses were weighted appropriately. RESULTS: Results indicated higher levels of personal SES, such as having health insurance or not experiencing a financial hardship in the past year, decreased the likelihood of reporting lifetime NUPM. In contrast higher levels of parent SES (e.g. parental education) were associated with an increased likelihood of reporting lifetime use of NUPM tranquilizers and stimulants. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study suggest parental SES may have a stronger influence over NUPM than personal levels of SES, particularly for the categories of tranquilizers and stimulants. Furthermore, these findings indicate more research is needed on this subject to better understand the NUPM epidemic in order to effectively develop comprehensive clinical, public health, and policy-related intervention and prevention approaches.
Keyword(s)Drug use Nupm Ses prescription young adult
Notes1097-9891 Stewart, Thomas Darryl Reed, Mark B Journal article Am J Drug Alcohol Abuse. 2015 Aug 6:1-7.
Reference TypeJournal Article
Journal TitleThe American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse
Author(s)Stewart, Thomas Darryl
Reed, Mark B.