Home  |  Top News  |  Most Popular  |  Video  |  Multimedia  |  News Feeds  |  Feedback
  Medicine  |  Nature & Earth  |  Biology  |  Technology & Engineering  |  Space & Planetary  |  Psychology  |  Physics & Chemistry  |  Economics  |  Archaeology
Top > Medicine, Health Care > Peers, but Not Peer Pressure,… >

Peers, but Not Peer Pressure, Key to Prescription Drug Misuse among Young Adults

Published: August 17, 2014.
Released by American Sociological Association  

SAN FRANCISCO — Current efforts to prevent prescription drug misuse among young adults need to consider peers — but not peer pressure — according to a Purdue University study.

"With the 18-29 age group we may be spending unnecessary effort working a peer pressure angle in prevention and intervention efforts. That does not appear to be an issue for this age group," said study co-author Brian Kelly, a professor of sociology and anthropology who studies drug use and youth cultures. "Rather, we found more subtle components of the peer context as influential. These include peer drug associations, peers as points of drug access, and the motivation to misuse prescription drugs to have pleasant times with friends."

This research, funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), will be presented at the 109th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association by study co-author Alexandra Marin, a Purdue sociology doctoral student.

Prescription drug misuse has risen considerably during the 21st century and is the most commonly abused substance after alcohol and marijuana for people 14 and older, according to NIDA. Popular prescription drugs that are most frequently misused are sedatives, painkillers, and stimulants.

"People normally think about peer pressure in that peers directly and actively pressure an individual to do what they are doing," said Kelly, who also is director of Purdue's Center for Research on Young People's Health. "This study looks at that form of direct social pressure as well as more indirect forms of social pressure. We find that friends are not actively pressuring them, but it's a desire to have a good time alongside friends that matters."

The findings, collected from 2011-13, are based on survey interviews with 404 adults ages 18 to 29 who misused prescription drugs in the past 90 days. Two-hundred fourteen in-person interviews also were conducted. These individuals were recruited from popular nightlife locations such as bars, clubs, and lounges in New York City. Average misuse of prescription drugs, such as painkillers, sedatives and stimulants, was 38 times in the past 90 days.

This study evaluated the role of peer factors on three prescription drug misuse outcomes: the frequency of misuse; administering drugs in ways other than swallowing, such as sniffing, smoking, and injecting the drugs; and symptoms of dependency on prescription drugs.

"We found that peer drug associations are positively associated with all three outcomes," Kelly said. "If there are high perceived social benefits or low perceived social consequences within the peer network, they are more likely to lead to a greater frequency of misuse, as well as a greater use of non-oral methods of administration and a greater likelihood of displaying symptoms of dependence. The motivation to misuse prescription drugs to have a good time with friends is also associated with all three outcomes. The number of sources of drugs in their peer group also matters, which is notable since sharing prescription drugs is common among these young adults."

Kelly and Marin collaborated with Purdue assistant professor of sociology Michael Vuolo, as well as professors Brooke E. Wells and Jeffrey T. Parsons from the City University of New York's Hunter College.




The above story is based on materials provided by American Sociological Association.

Translate this page: Chinese French German Italian Japanese Korean Portuguese Russian Spanish


comments powered by Disqus


Related »

School 
12/1/14 
Skipping College Makes Young People More Likely to Abuse Pain Pills
December 1, 2014 -- A study just released by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health compared the use …
Young 
6/2/15 
Study: Teens Start Misusing ADHD Drugs And Other Stimulants Earlier Than You Might Think
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Despite stereotypes about college students resorting to black-market Ritalin to help them cram for exams, …
Percent 
11/1/10 
Non-medical Prescription Drug Use More Common among Rural Teens Than City Dwellers
Rural teens appear more likely than their urban peers to use prescription drugs for non-medical purposes, according to a …
Years 
5/8/12 
16 Years Old Is Peak Risk for Teens Misusing Prescription Drugs
EAST LANSING, Mich. — The peak risk for misusing prescription pain relievers occurs in mid-adolescence, specifically about 16 years …
Lankenau 
2/27/12 
Researchers Describe Link Between Prescription And Illicit Drug Misuse in High-risk Groups
A new report from researchers at the Drexel University School of Public Health identifies patterns in the misuse of …
Analgesics 
10/16/12 
Young People Driving Epidemic of Prescription Drug Abuse
DENVER (Oct. 16, 2012) – A new study by the University of Colorado Denver reveals that today's adolescents are …
More » 
 
© Newsline Foundation  |  About  |  Privacy Policy  |  Feedback  |  Mobile