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      Prevalence and co-occurrence of addictive behaviors among former alternative high school youth

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          Abstract

          Background and Aims: Recent work has studied multiple addictions using a matrix measure, which taps multiple addictions through single responses for each type. Methods: The present study investigated use of a matrix measure approach among former alternative high school youth (average age = 19.8 years) at risk for addictions. Lifetime and last 30-day prevalence of one or more of 11 addictions reviewed in other work (Sussman, Lisha & Griffiths, 2011) was the primary focus (i.e., cigarettes, alcohol, other/hard drugs, eating, gambling, Internet, shopping, love, sex, exercise, and work). Also, the co-occurrence of two or more of these 11 addictive behaviors was investigated. Finally, the latent class structure of these addictions, and their associations with other measures, was examined. Results: We found that ever and last 30-day prevalence of one or more of these addictions was 79.2% and 61.5%, respectively. Ever and last 30-day co-occurrence of two or more of these addictions was 61.5% and 37.7%, respectively. Latent Class Analysis suggested two groups: a generally Non-addicted Group (67.2% of the sample) and a “Work Hard, Play Hard”-addicted Group that was particularly invested in addiction to love, sex, exercise, the Internet, and work. Supplementary analyses suggested that the single-response type self-reports may be measuring the addictions they intend to measure. Discussion and Conclusions: We suggest implications of these results for future studies and the development of prevention and treatment programs, though much more validation research is needed on the use of this type of measure.

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              Prevalence of the addictions: a problem of the majority or the minority?

              An increasing number of research studies over the last three decades suggest that a wide range of substance and process addictions may serve similar functions. The current article considers 11 such potential addictions (tobacco, alcohol, illicit drugs, eating, gambling, Internet, love, sex, exercise, work, and shopping), their prevalence, and co-occurrence, based on a systematic review of the literature. Data from 83 studies (each study n = at least 500 subjects) were presented and supplemented with small-scale data. Depending on which assumptions are made, overall 12-month prevalence of an addiction among U.S. adults varies from 15% to 61%. The authors assert that it is most plausible that 47% of the U.S. adult population suffers from maladaptive signs of an addictive disorder over a 12-month period and that it may be useful to think of addictions as due to problems of lifestyle as well as to person-level factors.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                J Behav Addict
                jba
                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                2062-5871
                2063-5303
                March 2014
                3 February 2014
                : 3
                : 1
                : 33-40
                Affiliations
                Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research, University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, Alhambra, CA, USA
                Author notes
                *Corresponding author: Steve Sussman, PhD, FAAHB, FAPA; Departments of Preventive Medicine and Psychology, Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research, University of Southern California, Soto Street Building, 2001 North Soto Street, Room 302A, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA; Phone: +1-323-442-8220; Cell phone: +1-626-376-0389; Fax: +1-626-442-8201; ssussma@ 123456usc.edu
                Article
                JBA.3.2014.005
                10.1556/JBA.3.2014.005
                3969796
                24701344
                © 2014 Akadémiai Kiadó

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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