Motivational model of problem drinking for men and women /
Newman, Kristin Leann.
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This thesis tested a path model of the relationships of reasons for drinking and reasons for limiting drinking with consumption of alcohol and drinking problems. It was hypothesized that reasons for drinking would be composed of positively and negatively reinforcing reasons, and that reasons for limiting drinking would be composed of personal and social reasons. Problem drinking was operationalized as consisting of two factors, consumption and drinking problems, with a positive relationship between the two. It was predicted that positively and negatively reinforcing reasons for drinking would be associated with heavier consumption and, in turn, more drinking problems, through level of consumption. Negatively reinforcing reasons were also predicted to be associated with drinking problems directly, independent of level of consumption. It was hypothesized that reasons for limiting drinking would be associated with lower levels of consumption and would be related to fewer drinking problems, through level of consumption. Finally, among women, reasons for limiting drinking were expected to be associated with drinking problems directly, independent of level of consumption. The sample, was taken from the second phase of the Niagara Young Aduh Health Study, a community sample of young adult men and women. Measurement models of reasons for drinking, reasons for limiting drinking, and problem drinking were tested using Confirmatory Factor Analysis. After adequate fit of each measurement model was obtained, the complete structural model, with all hypothesized paths, was tested for goodness of fit. Cross-group equality constraints were imposed on all models to test for gender differences. The results provided evidence supporting the hypothesized structure of reasons for drinking and problem drinking. A single factor model of reasons for limiting drinking was used in the analyses because a two-factor model was inadequate. Support was obtained for the structural model. For example, the resuhs revealed independent influences of Positively Reinforcing Reasons for Drinking, Negatively Reinforcing Reasons for Drinking, and Reasons for Limiting Drinking on consumption. In addition. Negatively Reinforcing Reasons helped to account for Drinking Problems independent of the amount of alcohol consumed. Although an additional path from Reasons for Limiting Drinking to Drinking Problems was hypothesized for women, it was of marginal significance and did not improve the model's fit. As a result, no sex differences in the model were found. This may be a result of the convergence of drinking patterns for men and women. Furthermore, it is suggested that gender differences may only be found in clinical samples of problem drinkers, where the relative level of consumption for women and men is similar.