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BMC Public Health. 2016 Jan 27;16:79. doi: 10.1186/s12889-016-2731-8.

Prevalence, correlates, and associated psychological problems of substance use in Korean adolescents.

Author information

1
Department of Mental Health Research, Seoul National Hospital, 398, Neungdong-ro, Gwangin-gu, Seoul, 143-711, South Korea. subin-21@hanmail.net.
2
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Seoul National Hospital, 398, Neungdong-ro, Gwangin-gu, Seoul, 143-711, South Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Substance use among Korean adolescents has been increasing, but little is known about the correlates of substance use in this population. Identification of the correlates is required for development of preventive approaches that aim to reduce or eliminate risk. Therefore, we examined the prevalence and correlates of substance use including psychological problems in a nationwide sample of Korean adolescents.

METHODS:

Data from the 2014 Korean Youth Risk Behavior Web-Based Survey, collected from 72,060 adolescents aged 12-18 years (mean age 14.94 ± 1.75 years), were analyzed. Participants' lifetime experiences with substances (alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs) were assessed. Participants' perceived stress, depressive mood, and suicidality during the previous 12 months were also investigated.

RESULTS:

The lifetime prevalence estimates of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drug use were 43.0, 19.9, and 0.4 % of the participants, respectively. The most commonly used illicit drugs were inhalants. Older age, male gender, non-residence with family, low parental educational level and socio-economic status, and low academic achievement were positively and significantly associated with substance use. Substance (alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drug) use was positively and significantly associated with severe stress, depressive mood, and suicidality during the previous 12 months, with the highest odds ratios obtained from illicit drug use.

CONCLUSIONS:

These results indicate that the use of substances (alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs) among Korean adolescents is associated with socially disadvantaged families, psychological problems, and risky behavior. Health education including dependency prevention programs is needed for these high-risk groups.

PMID:
26818029
PMCID:
PMC4728773
DOI:
10.1186/s12889-016-2731-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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