Substance Use Among Latinx Adolescents in the USA: Scope, Theory, Interventions, and Next Steps

  • Flavio F. MarsigliaEmail author
  • Elizabeth Kiehne


Substance use and abuse among Latinx adolescents is an important public health challenge because adolescents are highly vulnerable to substance use, and substance use can have a negative impact on their overall health and well-being. In this chapter, we provide a very brief history of the growth of the Latinx population in the USA and outline the epidemiology of substance use, highlighting within-group differences, including differences by country of origin, gender, and age, and explore substance use within the framework of the immigrant paradox. We also propose the use of an ecodevelopmental approach to preventing and reducing substance use among youth and describe an innovative evidence-based intervention, known as keepin’ it REAL, for early adolescents. We conclude with a call for action, including further research to explore the roles of culture and potential sources of data that can use used to elucidate both risk and protective factors.


Substance use Adolescent Evidence-based intervention Adolescent Culture Latinx 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social WorkPhoenixUSA

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