Navigation Links
National guardsmen face a high risk of developing alcohol abuse problems following deployment
Date:2/16/2012

February 16, 2012 -- Soldiers in the National Guard with no history of alcohol abuse are at significant risk of developing alcohol-related problems during and after deployment, according to a new study published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence journal. Researchers at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health and colleagues at three other institutions found that the soldiers at greatest risk of developing alcohol-related problems also experienced depression and/or PTSD during or after deployment.

Alcohol-related behaviors are common among the military, yet few studies have looked at how issues like PTSD and depression contribute to the risk for abuse during or following their service. The knowledge gap is even greater for army guard soldiers.

The researchers based their findings on data collected between June 2008 and February 2009 from 963 soldiers of the Ohio Army National Guard and who said they had never abused alcohol prior to active duty. The investigators found that 113 (11.7%) of the soldiers reported alcohol abuse disorder that first occurred during or post deployment.

The 113 respondents were also screened for depression and PTSD based on standard criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV). Among this group, 35 (31%) also reported depression, 23 (20.4%) reported PTSD, and 15 (13.3%) reported both psychiatric conditions. Interestingly, the study shows that alcohol abuse was uncommon among the small number of participants who had a history of depression or PTSD prior to their deployment.

The soldiers at risk for new onset alcohol abuse were mostly male (97%), less than 35 years of age (74%), and single (45%). The majority had been deployed only once and most recently to a conflict setting.

"A novel finding of our study is that developing depression or PTSD during or after deployment were strong risk factors for having alcohol problems during the same time period," said Brandon Marshall, PhD, of the Department of Epidemiology at Columbia's Mailman School and lead author of the study. Because new onset alcohol abuse was most common among service members experiencing depression and PTSD, one possible explanation is that soldiers who experienced depression or PTSD self-medicate with alcohol to cope with negative feelings and the stress of deployment.

These findings have important implications for intervention and policy, according to Dr. Marshall and colleagues. Historically, few active soldiers seek treatment services for alcohol abuse, mainly because information is non-confidential and may be perceived as having negative career consequences. "The high prevalence of alcohol abuse during and after deployment observed here suggests that policies that promote improved access to care and confidentiality merit strong consideration," noted Dr. Marshall.

Previous studies have found that National Guard soldiers are more likely to engage in alcohol-related behavior compared to active army personnel. They are also less likely to enter substance abuse treatment after they return from active duty. "These findings indicate the urgent need to evaluate the availability and uptake of alcohol treatment interventions for this population," noted Sandro Galea, MD, DrPH, chair of the Mailman School Department of Epidemiology and senior author.

The investigators caution that the timing of new onset alcohol abuse in relation to a psychiatric disorder was self-reported. They also note that there were few women included in the study.


'/>"/>

Contact: Stephanie Berger
sb2247@columbia.edu
212-305-4372
Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. NationalCreditReport.com Reminds Consumers of Ways to Improve Credit Report and Score in 2010
2. The National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship Joins the Commission on Cancer
3. National Wildlife Federation Says Outdoor Time for Kids Can Help First Lady Achieve Her “Let's Move” Goal
4. Howard Dean to Speak at the 2010 DTC National Conference
5. International Diabetes Federation awards $2 million to 9 global diabetes research projects
6. Jion Beijing Great Wall International Travel Agency Immediate Exposure to China Expo 2010
7. U.S. National Guard Connects Nationwide with Desktop Alert's Command and Control Mass Notification Systems and Common Alerting Protocol (CAP)
8. H1N1 international symposium to be hosted by Emory-UGA Influenza Center
9. The Alliance for a Healthier Generation Names Celtics Captain Paul Pierce National Athlete Spokesperson in the Fight Against Childhood Obesity
10. Researchers Who Discovered First Genes for Stuttering will Present Findings to the National Stuttering Association
11. Protecting patients: Study shows that Johns Hopkins flu vaccination rates twice national average
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... Dr. David Mahon leads Siena Dental, a comprehensive dental ... named a 2017 Top Patient Rated Henderson Dentist by Find Local Doctors ... local physicians and dentists who have earned high ratings and superior patient reviews from ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... February 23, 2017 , ... ... clinical trials, today announced that Premier Research, a leading clinical development service provider, ... trials are becoming increasingly complex, due in part to an array of circumstances ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... , ... February 23, 2017 , ... ... publication and community for those in the fight against cancer, has produced a ... their success. HRA will release top-line findings in a webinar, Defining Compassionate ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... VA – , ... ... coming. It’s the perfect opportunity for the nation to come ... a college basketball bracket – with its favorite fruit – ... is encouraging apple lovers to join the “Apple Madness” bracket ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 23, 2017 , ... ... of her Smiling Patriot program today with a new Indiegogo campaign ... dental care to homeless veterans in the Los Angeles area, either as a participating ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/23/2017)... Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: MDXG), the leading regenerative medicine company ... and market advanced products and therapies for the Wound ... sectors of healthcare, today announced its record results for ... 2016. Full Year 2016 Highlights are: ... full year 2015 revenue ...
(Date:2/23/2017)...   SeraCare Life Sciences , a manufacturer ... manufacturers and clinical laboratories, is announcing an upcoming ... Tests" to be hosted by GenomeWeb ... Standard Time (US). The goal of ... improved performance and global standardization in the implementation ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... , February 23, 2017 The U.S. ... legalized cannabis for recreational use in 2016. According to a ... market was worth an estimated $7.2 billion in 2016 and ... of 17%. While adult recreational sales are projected to jump ... with a 25% CAGR. The market may grow faster as ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: