Drug Alcohol Depend. 2022 Apr 7;235:109448. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2022.109448. Online ahead of print.
BACKGROUND: Little is known regarding what sociodemographic characteristics and reasons for use are associated with adolescent solitary alcohol and marijuana use.
METHODS: Data from 7845 12th grade students participating in the nationally-representative Monitoring the Future study from 2015 to 2021 were used to examine cross-sectional associations between sociodemographics, heavy drinking/marijuana use, reasons for use, and past 12-month solitary alcohol or marijuana use among past 12-month users. Historical trends and possible differences related to the COVID-19 pandemic also were examined.
RESULTS: Solitary use prevalence increased from 2015 to 2021 with no evidence of significant COVID-19 deviations. In 2021, solitary alcohol use was reported by 32.1% (SE 3.01) and solitary marijuana use by 55.8% (4.72) of those reporting past 12-month use. Common and substance-specific sociodemographic risk factors were observed. Binge drinking was associated with solitary alcohol use; frequent marijuana use was associated with solitary marijuana use. Reasons for use related to coping with negative affect were associated with solitary use. Compulsive use reasons were more strongly associated with solitary alcohol than marijuana use. Drinking to have a good time with friends was negatively associated with solitary alcohol use but this association was not seen for solitary marijuana use.
CONCLUSIONS: The percentage of adolescents who use alcohol or marijuana when they were alone has increased among those who report using each substance. Associations between solitary use and (a) higher levels of consumption and (b) coping with negative affect highlight the importance of solitary use as a risk indicator.
Source: ncbi 2