[Onset of alcohol consumption in 7-18-year-old children and adolescents].Ugeskr Laeger 2009; 171(46):3345-9UL
Early onset of alcohol consumption contributes to increased risk of subsequent heavy alcohol use, alcohol dependence and alcohol-related problems. The objective of this study was to examine the onset of alcohol consumption in a group of Danish children.
The study was part of an asthma study and was based on face-to-face interviews with 480 randomly chosen children and adolescents between seven and 18 years of age. Questionnaires were sent to their parents. Onset of alcohol was defined as consumption of at least one unit of alcohol.
Age at onset of alcohol consumption was 13.4 years for boys and 13.9 years for girls (p = 0.020). There was a significant association between age at onset and smoking of the adolescent (hazard ratio 2.19; 95% confidence interval (CI 1.16-4.12, p = 0.015) and maternal smoking during pregnancy (hazard ratio 2.23; 95% CI 1.31-3.78, p = 0.003). We found no association between early onset of alcohol consumption and parents' smoking, drinking, socioeconomic or marital status.
Further knowledge is needed to clarify the factors associated with early onset of alcohol consumption among Danish adolescents.