HealthDay News — Parental supply of alcohol to adolescents is associated with increased odds of alcohol-related harms, and there is no evidence to support the view that parental supply protects from adverse drinking outcomes, according to a study published online in The Lancet Public Health.

Richard P. Mattick, PhD, from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, and colleagues conducted a prospective cohort study using data from the Australian Parental Supply of Alcohol Longitudinal Study cohort of adolescents to examine correlations between parental supply of alcohol and subsequent drinking outcomes of a 6-year period of adolescence. Children in grade 7 and their parents were recruited and surveyed annually; 1927 eligible parents and adolescents were recruited between September 2010 and June 2011, and were followed until 2016.

The researchers found that the odds of subsequent binge consumption, alcohol-related harm, and symptoms of alcohol-use disorder were increased for adolescents who were supplied alcohol only by parents (odds ratios, 2.58, 2.53, and 2.51, respectively) compared with those reporting no supply. Compared with no supply from any source, there was no significant correlation between parental supply of alcohol with odds of reporting symptoms of alcohol abuse or dependence.

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“There is no evidence to support the view that parental supply protects from adverse drinking outcomes by providing alcohol to their child,” the authors write. “Parents should be advised that this practice is associated with risk, both directly and indirectly through increased access to alcohol from other sources.”


Mattick RP, Clare PJ, Aiken A, et al. Association of parental supply of alcohol with adolescent drinking, alcohol-related harms, and alcohol use disorder symptoms: a prospective cohort study [published online January 24, 2018]. Lancet Public Health. doi:10.1016/S2468-2667(17)30240-2