Binge Drinking Among Underage College Students: A Test of a Restraint-Based Conceptualization of Risk for Alcohol Abuse

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The authors tested a restraint-based model that binge drinking is a function of being tempted to drink alcohol while also being concerned about avoiding excessive alcohol intake. Underage (18- to 20-year-olds, 204 men and 225 women) college student drinkers completed measures that assessed the attraction to alcohol (e.g., temptation to drink, alcohol expectancies), concern about regulating alcohol intake (e.g., restriction of alcohol intake, reasons for limiting drinking), and alcohol-related outcomes (binge drinking, alcohol problems). In separate hierarchical multiple regressions, the attraction to alcohol accounted for significant amounts of additional variance in each of the alcohol outcomes. Concern about regulating alcohol intake accounted for additional variance, above that explained by attraction to alcohol. The results suggest that interventions for underage binge drinking should include training in the skills for regulating alcohol intake.

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