Cannabis and binge alcohol use among older individuals with major depressive episode
Subst Abus. 2021 Oct 19:1-9. doi: 10.1080/08897077.2021.1986879. Online ahead of print.
Research shows significant associations of major depression with cannabis and binge alcohol use. However, despite increasing cannabis and binge alcohol use rates among the 50+ age group, research on this age group is scant. Methods: We used the 2015-2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health data (n = 44,007 age 50+) and multinomial logistic regression models to examine associations of a major depressive episode (MDE) with cannabis and binge alcohol use and co-use and associations of binge alcohol use with nonmedical and medical cannabis use. Results: Of individuals age 50+, 89.6% had no history of MDE, 5.7% had prior-to-past-year MDE, and 4.7% had past-year MDE. The rates of past-month cannabis use were 4.3%, 7.7%, and 11.6% and binge alcohol use were 17.3%, 18.7%, and 19.9% among those with no MDE history, prior-to-past-year MDE, and past-year MDE, respectively. Compared to no MDE history, prior-to-past-year MDE (RRR = 1.70, 95% CI = 1.30-2.23) and past-year MDE (RRR = 1.80, 95% CI = 1.27-2.55) were significantly associated with past-month cannabis use (with or without binge alcohol use). However, MDE status was not associated with past-month binge alcohol use. Among cannabis users, binge alcohol use was significantly associated with nonmedical cannabis use only (RRR = 2.50, 95% CI = 1.95-3.21). Users of cannabis and/or binge alcohol also had a higher likelihood of using tobacco products and illicit drugs. Conclusions: Healthcare professionals treating individuals age 50+ with depression should screen for substance use, provide education on the potential adverse effects of polysubstance use, and help them access treatment for co-occurring depression and substance use problems.
Source: ncbi 2
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