your internet resource on facebook on twitter on Google+ on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Fredericks Peebles & Morgan LLP
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines

printer friendly version
Study links childhood experience to alcohol abuse
Friday, September 19, 2003

Native American children who were abused or attended boarding school are more likely to have problems with alcohol as adults, according to a study being published this month.

In what was said to be the first study of its kind, researchers found that men who suffered a combination of physical and sexual abuse as children were almost twice as likely to abuse alcohol. Women who were sexually abused or sent away to school were twice as likely to have alcohol problems, researchers said.

"The findings suggest that childhood exposures are highly relevant to Native American communities," the study authors wrote.

Published in the September issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, the study aims to understand why alcohol affects Indian Country disproportionately. From 1994 to 1996, the alcohol death rate among Native Americans was over seven times the rate for all other Americans, a figure considered conservative.

In studies among non-Natives, childhood experiences have been shown to correlate with alcohol problems later in life. But similar information about Natives was inconsistent, researchers said, because the studies were limited to one tribe.

By looking at seven tribes, researchers were able to get a wider view of alcohol abuse among different Native communities. Members of three tribes from the Phoenix area of the Indian Health Service (IHS), and one each from the Minnesota, Oklahoma, Portland and Nashville areas participated in face-to-face interviews with other Indians from 1998 to 2001.

The 1660 men and women subjects were asked about five childhood "maltreatment" categories: physical abuse, physical neglect, sexual abuse, emotional abuse and emotional neglect. They were also asked about parental alcoholism, education and cultural characteristics like language use, participation in tribal ceremonies and proximity to tribal homelands.

According to the study results, lifetime prevalence of alcohol dependence was high in all but one tribe. Similarly, parental alcoholism was reported by more than half of tribal members in all but one tribe.

Overall, 9 percent of men involved in the study had been diagnosed with alcohol abuse and 30 percent with alcohol dependence. Among women, 5 percent had been diagnosed with alcohol abuse and 18 percent with alcohol dependence.

Men and women were affected differently by other childhood maltreatment, researchers found. Combined physical and sexual abuse trigged higher alcohol abuse rates for men while sexual abuse and boarding school attendance were determining factors for women.

"The boarding school findings suggest that the removal from home for educational purposes has an independent negative consequence above that of maltreatment for women, but not for men," the study authors wrote.

The cultural and tribal influences on alcohol dependence were harder to discern for researchers, in part because of the diversity of the subjects. But they found that "relationships between cultural factors and alcohol dependence were not significant among men."

On the other hand, women who knew more of their language were had a higher risk of alcohol problems. Women who lived closer to their tribal lands were less likely to report alcohol dependence, the study found.

Researchers said their findings showed the need to develop social programs to lessen the exposure to adult drinking and to establish intensive preventive education on childhood sexual abuse.

The study authors were Mary P. Koss, Nicole P. Yuan, Douglas Dightman, Ronald J. Prince, Mona Polacca and Byron Sanderson from the University of Arizona College of Public Health. Author David Goldman was from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, which funded the study through a contract.

Relevant Links:
American Journal of Preventive Medicine -
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism -

Related Stories:
Indian Country tops drug report again (9/17)
Native youth top drug use survey again (09/06)
Native youth targeted in anti-drug ads (5/17)
Native youth heaviest smokers in nation (4/3)
Report: Native youth highest drug users (10/5)
Ad campaign targets youth drug use (9/7)
Drug use high among Native youth (9/1)

Copyright 2000-2003 Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
White House blasts Native American Energy Act ahead of vote (10/8)
House Natural Resources Committee approves two Indian bills (10/8)
First Nations Development Institute awards $250K for ranching (10/8)
Four Native chefs participate in unique food event in New Mexico (10/8)
Native Sun News: Lone Indian voice opposes mountain lion hunt (10/8)
Lakota Country Times: Wind power comes to Rosebud community (10/8)
Delphine Red Shirt: Scandal shuts down program for Indian youth (10/8)
Vince Two Eagles: Native medicine goes back thousands of years (10/8)
Jay Daniels: Indian lands still face threat from state governments (10/8)
Steven Newcomb: Religious doctrine guides Indian law and policy (10/8)
Brian Pierson: Recent federal court decisions affecting Indian law (10/8)
Choctaw Nation and Chickasaw Nation celebrate trust settlement (10/8)
Actor joked about taking tribal artifacts from ranch in New Mexico (10/8)
Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians gives $100K for cancer center (10/8)
Radio station brings news and more to Yankton Sioux Reservation (10/8)
Indian gaming industry grew 116 percent between 2001 and 2013 (10/8)
Arizona tribes on road to recovery with $1.81B in casino revenues (10/8)
Pojoaque Pueblo secures injunction in New Mexico casino dispute (10/8)
Little River Band sees off-reservation casino as boost for revenue (10/8)
Pioneering tribes share experiences with prosecuting non-Indians (10/7)
Senate Committee on Indian Affairs approves two bills at meeting (10/7)
Congress approves land-into-trust bill for Pueblos in New Mexico (10/7)
House Natural Resources Committee holds markup on Indian bills (10/7)
Native Sun News: Rival teams meet on football field at Pine Ridge (10/7)
Lakota Country Times: Tribes receive $940M in Ramah settlement (10/7)
James Giago Davies: Embrace distance running in Indian Country (10/7)
Brandon Ecoffey: Powerful forces aim to keep out the Native vote (10/7)
Thomas Perez: Youth on Wind River Reservation share high hopes (10/7)
Stephen Corry: Native people displaced for sake of 'conservation' (10/7)
States oppose tribal jurisdiction in upcoming Supreme Court case (10/7)
Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe challenges Indian education reforms (10/7)
Two indicted for death of Seminole Nation man who went missing (10/7)
Saginaw Chippewa Tribe donates bottled water for city residents (10/7)
Mohegan Tribe swears in four council members following election (10/7)
Tribes in Amazon rainforest defend homeland from illegal loggers (10/7)
Chukchansi Tribe accused of illegal vote and casino preparations (10/7)
Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe suspends gaming official after arrest (10/7)
Tribes to share in Keno revenues under new deal with Connecticut (10/7)
Seminole Tribe remains in talks for new Class III gaming compact (10/7)
Controversy stirs as House takes up Native American Energy Act (10/6)
Native Sun News: Crow Tribe leader advises Rep. Zinke on energy (10/6)
Lakota Country Times: Program for Native students closes down (10/6)
Mark Trahant: Far too many missing and murdered Native women (10/6)
Alfred Walking Bull: Let's open up about suicide in Indian Country (10/6)
Raina Thiele: Alaska Natives share culture with President Obama (10/6)
Mary Pember: Fashion show tackles trafficking in Indian Country (10/6)
Torivio Fodder: Pope Francis ignores sins of Indian mission era (10/6)
Sac and Fox Nation disappointed by denial of Jim Thorpe case (10/6)
Flandreau Santee Sioux Tribe expects big crowd for pot kickoff (10/6)
Colville Tribes pass resolution for small amounts of marijuana (10/6)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.