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Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 95, Issue 2, pp 127–132 | Cite as

Alcohol Problems and Interest in Self-help

A Population Study of Alberta Adults
  • T. Cameron WildEmail author
  • Amanda B. Roberts
  • John Cunningham
  • Donald Schopflocher
  • Hannah Pazderka-Robinson
Article

Abstract

Background

We quantified the prevalence of alcohol problems among Alberta adults and determined relationships between sociodemographic characteristics, problem drinking status, and interest in self-help materials to reduce alcohol use.

Methods

A computer-aided telephone interview was administered to a stratified random sample of 10,014 Albertans, 18 years of age or older (5,621 women and 4,393 men; M age = 43.3 years, SD = 16.0), with a response rate of 65.4%. Measures included: 1) current drinking status, 2) prior alcohol treatment, 3) problem drinking status (using the Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test; AUDIT), and 4) interest in receiving free selfhelp materials to encourage safe drinking. Data were weighted to reflect age, sex, and regional Alberta population.

Results

Of the total sample, 19.3% abstained from drinking in the past year, 4.2% had received treatment for alcohol problems at some point in their lives, and 80.7% were current drinkers (i.e., consumed alcohol in the previous year). Some 15.2% (n=1,193) of current drinkers were classified as having a drinking problem. Logistic regression analyses showed that problem drinkers had 3.5 times greater odds of being male and 2.3 times greater odds of being interested in self-help interventions, compared to other current drinkers. Being single, of younger age, and not being exposed to post-secondary education also significantly predicted problem drinking status.

Interpretation

Alcohol misuse is common among Alberta drinkers, but many of them are interested in receiving brief public health interventions designed to help them assert control over their behaviour.

Résumé

Contexte

Nous avons quantifié la prévalence des problèmes d’alcool chez les adultes de l’Alberta et déterminé les relations entre le profil sociodémographique, l’abus d’alcool et l’intérêt pour les outils d’autothérapie lorsqu’on veut réduire sa consommation.

Méthode

Nous avons administré une entrevue téléphonique assistée par ordinateur à un échantillon aléatoire stratifié de 10 014 Albertains de 18 ans et plus (5 621 femmes et 4 393 hommes; âge moyen: 43,3 ans; déviation sensible: 16,0) et obtenu un taux de réponse de 65,4 %. Nos mesures étaient: 1) la consommation actuelle d’alcool, 2) les traitements antérieurs pour alcoolisme, 3) l’abus d’alcool (selon le test AUDIT - Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test) et 4) l’intérêt à recevoir des outils d’autothérapie gratuits favorisant une consommation en toute sécurité. Les données ont été pondérées selon l’âge, le sexe et la région de l’Alberta.

Résultats

Sur l’échantillon total, 19,3 % des répondants n’avaient pas consommé d’alcool depuis un an, 4,2 % avaient été traités pour des problèmes d’alcool durant leur vie, et 80,7 % étaient des consommateurs actuels d’alcool (ils avaient consommé de l’alcool au cours des 12 mois précédents). Environ 15,2 % (n=1 193) des consommateurs actuels ont été classés dans la catégorie des buveurs, c’est-à-dire des personnes ayant un problème d’alcool. Des analyses de régression logistique ont montré que les buveurs étaient 3,5 fois plus susceptibles d’être des hommes et 2,3 fois plus susceptibles d’être intéressés par les mesures d’autothérapie que les consommateurs actuels d’alcool. Le fait d’être célibataire, relativement jeune et de n’avoir pas fait d’études postsecondaires étaient aussi des prédicteurs significatifs de l’abus d’alcool.

Interprétation

L’abus d’alcool est répandu chez les consommateurs de l’Alberta, mais beaucoup d’entre eux sont intéressés par de brèves mesures d’intervention en santé publique qui les aideraient à maîtriser leur comportement.

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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Cameron Wild
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Amanda B. Roberts
    • 1
  • John Cunningham
    • 2
    • 3
  • Donald Schopflocher
    • 4
  • Hannah Pazderka-Robinson
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Health Promotion Studies and Department of Public Health Sciences, Addiction and Mental Health Research LaboratoryUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada
  2. 2.Centre for Addiction and Mental HealthTorontoCanada
  3. 3.Department of Public Health SciencesUniversity of TorontoCanada
  4. 4.Alberta Health and WellnessEdmontonCanada

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