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      Alcohol’s Secondhand Harms in the United States: New Data on Prevalence and Risk Factors

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          Abstract

          Objective:

          This study examined a range of indicators of alcohol’s harm to others (AHTO) among U.S. adults and assessed sociodemographic and alcohol-related risk factors for AHTO.

          Method:

          The data came from 8,750 adult men and women in two parallel 2015 U.S. national surveys conducted in English and Spanish. Both surveys used computer-assisted telephone interviews and two-stage, stratified, list-assisted, random samples of adults ages 18 and older.

          Results:

          One in five adults experienced at least one of ten 12-month harms because of someone else’s drinking. The prevalence of specific harm types and characteristics differed by gender. Women were more likely to report harm due to drinking by a spouse/partner or family member, whereas men were more likely to report harm due to a stranger’s drinking. Being female also predicted family/financial harms. Younger age increased risk for all AHTO types, except physical aggression. Being of Black/other ethnicity, being separated/widowed/divorced, and having a college education without a degree each predicted physical aggression harm. The harmed individual’s own heavy drinking and having a heavy drinker in the household increased risk for all AHTO types. The risk for physical aggression due to someone else’s drinking was particularly elevated for heavy drinking women.

          Conclusions:

          Secondhand effects of alcohol in the United States are substantial and affected by sociodemographics, the harmed individual’s own drinking, and the presence of a heavy drinker in the household. Broad-based and targeted public health measures that consider AHTO risk factors are needed to reduce alcohol’s secondhand harms.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          J Stud Alcohol Drugs
          J Stud Alcohol Drugs
          jsad
          Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs
          Rutgers University
          1937-1888
          1938-4114
          May 2019
          30 June 2019
          : 80
          : 3
          : 273-281
          Affiliations
          [ a ]Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, Emeryville, California
          [ b ]Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, University of North Dakota, School of Medicine & Health Sciences, Grand Forks, North Dakota
          Author notes
          [* ]Correspondence may be sent to Madhabika B. Nayak at the Alcohol Research Group, Public Health Institute, 6001 Shellmound Street, Suite 450, Emeryville, CA 94608, or via email at: mnayak@ 123456arg.org .
          Article
          PMC6614929 PMC6614929 6614929 273
          10.15288/jsad.2019.80.273
          6614929
          31250790
          Copyright © 2019 by Alcohol Research Documentation, Inc.
          Page count
          Figures: 2, Tables: 2, Pages: 9
          Categories
          Featured Article

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