Alcohol use, impulsivity, and the non-medical use of prescription stimulants among college students


The non-medical use of prescription drugs (NMUPD) is a growing public health concern. College students have been identified as a particularly at risk population for engagement in NMUPD. Across all prescription drug classes, stimulants show the highest ratio of illicit to medical use and are thus important to examine within this population. Emerging research has suggested a relationship between the non-medical use of prescription stimulants (NMUPS) and alcohol use within the college student population. Finally, the construct of impulsivity may serve as an additional indicator for students who engage in NMUPS as well as those who engage in NMUPS/alcohol co-ingestion. The purpose of this paper is to expand on previous prevalence data collected for the past year NMUPS and NMUPS/alcohol co-ingestion. Additionally, this paper examines whether those who engage in NMUPS or NMUPS/alcohol co-ingestion differ significantly from their non-using counterparts on measures of alcohol use, alcohol related negative consequences, binge drinking, and impulsivity. Finally, binary logistic regression models indicated that increased alcohol use, alcohol related negative consequences, and impulsivity all significantly increase the odds of an individual engaging in NMUPS or NMUPS/alcohol co-ingestion. © 2014.

Publication Title

Addictive Behaviors