Research & Resources

Substance Use Risk and Protective Predictors Among Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Adolescents

Researchers in this study examined the factors involved in substances use (SU) among Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (NH/PI) adolescents and how to prevent it. They investigated the effect of ecological risk and protective factors at the individual, family, and school levels on SU for NH/PI adolescents. This prospective study utilized longitudinal data from 120 NH/PI adolescents who were part of an SU prevention program. Information was collected at two time points and the parents of the adolescents also provided data; all information was self-reported. Positive academic attitudes reported at Time 1 were negatively associated with alcohol and other drug use reported at Time 2. Specifically, NH/PI adolescents who reported more positive attitudes toward their school, peers, and teachers reported less alcohol and other SU. The researchers theorized that prevention efforts might be most effective for NH/PI adolescents if addressed within the school context. This may include implementing programs in schools, utilizing teachers as role models, and/or promoting prosocial peer relationships to support positive behaviors.
This paper, “Examining risk and protective predictors of substance use among low-income Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander adolescents,” was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and published in The American journal of orthopsychiatry.

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