Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A caring mother is a child’s best defence against drug culture: European study shows

10.05.2002


The barrier that ‘good parents’ can provide for their children against the drugs culture is beginning to break down in cities where drugs are most freely available, researchers have found.



But the international study, led by Newcastle University in England, concluded that having a caring mother was the single most important factor in preventing youngsters from taking drugs.

The study, funded by the European Commission, found that 14 and 15 year-olds were far less likely to have drug and alcohol habits if they lived with both parents, were properly supervised and enjoyed high quality family relationships.


The research team led by Dr Paul McArdle, of Newcastle University’s Department of Child Health, found evidence that these protective effects were being eroded in areas where drug availability was particularly high. This was probably due to the additional peer pressure on teenagers to try drugs.

The one exception was among teenagers who had strong attachments to their mothers, which was found to remain a very effective barrier to drug abuse even in areas of high availability.

The research team commented that their findings underlined the role of families but especially ‘the unique role of mothers in regulating the behaviour of the great majority of young people.’

Dr McArdle and his colleagues analysed the answers to questionnaires filled in by 3,984 youngsters, aged 14-15, selected at random from cities in England, Eire, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands.
The youngsters were asked whether they took drugs such as cannabis, amphetamines, ecstasy, LSD or tranquillizers or were regular alcohol drinkers.

They were also asked whether they lived with both parents and a series of questions designed to assess the quality of their relationships and how well they were supervised. Questions included whether their parents cared about them watching excessive TV, whether someone was at home after school, whether they were they allowed to meet friends at home and whether they felt able to confide in their mother, father or grandparents.
The study found that quality of family life, particularly attachment to the mother, was the factor offering the greatest protection to teenagers against developing drug habits. Living with both parents was less important but also offered significant protection.

When both of these factors were present, the rate of drug abuse among the teenagers surveyed was 16.6 per cent. The figure rose to about 32 per cent if either one factor was present but not the other. If neither factor was present, 42.3 per cent of the teenagers used drugs.

Dr McArdle, who practices child psychiatry at the Fleming Nuffield Unit in Newcastle, said today: “This study shows that the quality of family life, or rather the lack of it for many young people, is at the core of the drugs problem in Western society.

‘Yet this message is largely absent from drugs prevention campaigns. We spell out the dangers of drug abuse to children on TV and launch drug prevention initiatives in schools — but it seems that no-one is really tackling the issue of parental responsibility.

‘Of course some marriages come to an end — but both parents could still take an interest in the kids, or perhaps be persuaded to do so. I believe that effective prevention of drug use is more about family relationships than any other factor.’

The report, published in ‘Addiction’, the journal of the Society for the Study of Addiction, states: ‘Both the quality of family relationships and the structure of families appear to be significant influences on youth drug use.

‘Very high availability through peer groups can overwhelm protection against drug use afforded by living with both parents and perhaps supervision.

‘These findings suggest that living with both parents may inhibit drug use but only if availability through peer networks is not very high.

‘They also suggest that attachment, particularly to mothers, is a more potent inhibitor and that this is truly across cultures and substances. This tends to break down only in face of broader syndromes of antisocial behaviour.’

Michael Warwicker | alphagalileo

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Custom-tailored strategy against glioblastomas
26.09.2016 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht New leukemia treatment offers hope
23.09.2016 | King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: OLED microdisplays in data glasses for improved human-machine interaction

The Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP has been developing various applications for OLED microdisplays based on organic semiconductors. By integrating the capabilities of an image sensor directly into the microdisplay, eye movements can be recorded by the smart glasses and utilized for guidance and control functions, as one example. The new design will be debuted at Augmented World Expo Europe (AWE) in Berlin at Booth B25, October 18th – 19th.

“Augmented-reality” and “wearables” have become terms we encounter almost daily. Both can make daily life a little simpler and provide valuable assistance for...

Im Focus: Artificial Intelligence Helps in the Discovery of New Materials

With the help of artificial intelligence, chemists from the University of Basel in Switzerland have computed the characteristics of about two million crystals made up of four chemical elements. The researchers were able to identify 90 previously unknown thermodynamically stable crystals that can be regarded as new materials. They report on their findings in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

Elpasolite is a glassy, transparent, shiny and soft mineral with a cubic crystal structure. First discovered in El Paso County (Colorado, USA), it can also be...

Im Focus: Complex hardmetal tools out of the 3D printer

For the first time, Fraunhofer IKTS shows additively manufactured hardmetal tools at WorldPM 2016 in Hamburg. Mechanical, chemical as well as a high heat resistance and extreme hardness are required from tools that are used in mechanical and automotive engineering or in plastics and building materials industry. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS in Dresden managed the production of complex hardmetal tools via 3D printing in a quality that are in no way inferior to conventionally produced high-performance tools.

Fraunhofer IKTS counts decades of proven expertise in the development of hardmetals. To date, reliable cutting, drilling, pressing and stamping tools made of...

Im Focus: Launch of New Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing

At AKL’16, the International Laser Technology Congress held in May this year, interest in the topic of process control was greater than expected. Appropriately, the event was also used to launch the Industry Working Group for Process Control in Laser Material Processing. The group provides a forum for representatives from industry and research to initiate pre-competitive projects and discuss issues such as standards, potential cost savings and feasibility.

In the age of industry 4.0, laser technology is firmly established within manufacturing. A wide variety of laser techniques – from USP ablation and additive...

Im Focus: New laser joining technologies at ‘K 2016’ trade fair

Every three years, the plastics industry gathers at K, the international trade fair for plastics and rubber in Düsseldorf. The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will also be attending again and presenting many innovative technologies, such as for joining plastics and metals using ultrashort pulse lasers. From October 19 to 26, you can find the Fraunhofer ILT at the joint Fraunhofer booth SC01 in Hall 7.

K is the world’s largest trade fair for the plastics and rubber industry. As in previous years, the organizers are expecting 3,000 exhibitors and more than...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Experts from industry and academia discuss the future mobile telecommunications standard 5G

23.09.2016 | Event News

ICPE in Graz for the seventh time

20.09.2016 | Event News

Using mathematical models to understand our brain

16.09.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stronger turbine blades with molybdenum silicides

26.09.2016 | Materials Sciences

Scientists Find Twisting 3-D Raceway for Electrons in Nanoscale Crystal Slices

26.09.2016 | Materials Sciences

Lowering the Heat Makes New Materials Possible While Saving Energy

26.09.2016 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>