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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

BU Study Reveals Links between Drinking, Violence in Mexico

Young people in Mexico who drink excessively had three times the odds of being injured in a fight or forced to have sexual contact as compared to occasional drinkers, according to a new study led by Boston University School of Public Health researchers.

The study, published in the journal Alcohol and Alcoholism, examined how alcohol-consumption patterns impact the odds of experiencing violent victimization. Data was gathered from surveys of 29,000 entering first-year students during orientation at a university in Mexico City.

The study found that males were significantly more likely than females to drink both frequently and heavily, although female drinking rates have increased over time. More than twice as many males as females drank more than two times a week, and more males than females drank more than five drinks in a single occasion at least once in the past year. Males also were significantly more likely than females to report problems with friends, a sexual situation they later regretted, or having a physical fight because they drank.

Females who were regular, heavy, and excessive drinkers had higher odds than males of being hit, insulted, threatened, or forced to have sexual relations, the study found. But both male and female heavy and excessive drinkers were at elevated risk for experiencing victimization.

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