COUN2041 Alcohol And Other Drugs Counselling

COUN2041 Alcohol And Other Drugs Counselling

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COUN2041 Alcohol And Other Drugs Counselling

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COUN2041 Alcohol And Other Drugs Counselling

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Course Code: COUN2041
University: Australian College Of Applied Psychology is not sponsored or endorsed by this college or university

Country: Australia


Read each article in depth to understand:
• What was researched (which drugs/s, population studied, context, location)
• What was the size of the sample studied?
• How was the research conducted? (qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods)
• What were the major findings of each article?
Outline the differences and similarities in method and findings across the three studies. Evaluate the quality of the research (for example, size of sample, how rigorous and generalisable is the research method?). Write a conclusion that evaluates the contribution of the research findings to the evidence base of Alcohol and Other Drugs Counselling and their relevance to practice.


Alcohol abuse among teenagers in Australia has been a major issue of concern over the years. Alcohol is a substance which when taken affects the normal functioning of the body. In this essay literature review of various authors is keenly looked into in order to determine the reported cases related to alcohol consumption among teenagers in Australia in the recent two decades.
With a focus on China, Janssen, Treloar, Merrill, & Jackson (2018) sampled a group adolescents aged 14-19 years. It was realized that more than one adolescent among every four consumes alcohol weekly. At least three out of every ten consumes it on a daily basis due to expectations that they will be models to others. They took a convenient sample of parents and adolescents who attended a series of focus groups to determine alcohol consumption among teenagers where schools were asked to advertise the event and invite parents to participate. Snowball sampling was used to enhance recruitment.
The findings from the focus groups were that parents negotiated that alcohol is not perceived as a drug in some communities within the Eastern Asia. Therefore, some of them provided alcohol to their teenagers as a means to make them avoid other drugs which are said to be more destructive and detrimental compared to alcohol which most of the confessed to have used when they were mere teenagers. They also stated that the accidents associated with alcohol are minimal and cannot be compared with accidents associated with other drugs such as bhang cocaine heroin and glue. Most of the parents had no extra notions on drinking therefore they described it as ‘drinking to get drunk’. Legalization of any drug as recreational increases adolescent’s willingness to use alcohol. Most of them were not worried of the long-term risks of alcohol consumption. The parents through the help of the trainers in the focus groups adopted a number of strategies to reduce alcohol consumption among the adolescents.
The strategies were providing teenagers with mobile phones to keep them busy on the internet, listening to music and watching relevant games, transporting teenagers to parties to interact with fellows so as to reduce loneliness that leads to alcohol consumption and setting clear guidelines on alcohol consumption so as to minimize the intake. Waldron, Malone, McGue, and Iacono  (2017) denote that parents living in rural areas are more lenient therefore, their adolescent children compared to their urban counterparts consume a lot of alcohol due to little or lack of proper guidelines and regulations on alcohol. Parents living in rural areas were urged to take an initiative to closely monitor their adolescent children so as to minimize peer pressure which leads to excessive alcohol consumption. Psychological distress as said by Kelly et al leads teenagers to associate distress with alcohol intake.
Waldron, Malone, McGue, & Iacono (2017) on genetic and environmental changes of co variation Latest data and influencing factors”, it is stated that young people who consume alcohol are at a higher risk because they consume excessively at a single occasion. Waldron et al. (2017) study on secondary school students in Australia reported that 17.4% students consumed a whole standard alcohol in the past week. 6.4% consumed at a risk of short term harm such injuries, conflicts resulting from drunkenness, risky sexual activities and hospitalization due to intoxication.
 The influencing factors for the high alcohol consumption rates in Australia were identified as: Parents intake of alcohol during pregnancy which leads to genetically urge to consume alcohol. Exposure to intake of alcohol at a tender age was also noted as a factor; teenagers brought up by drinking parents are more likely to become drunkards since they notice no big deal in doing it. Drinking to test how it feels to be drunk has also led to emergence of chain drunkards among teenagers aged 14-17 years. Environmental factors were also identified as a major factor that leads to drinking since parents will expose teenagers brought up in an atmosphere of drunkards to it not necessarily but by the role models they develop alongside drinking. Peer pressure was not left out since friendship is one of the major instances where one can be drugged into behaviors that are retorted and silly without their realization of it.
The remedies proposed were aimed at reducing this heavy intake of alcohol. High taxation on alcoholic products is one of the major remedy that has seen intake of alcohol immensely reduce among teenagers since most of them could not afford purchasing the products. Reduction of supply has also seen alcohol consumption reduce by a higher percentage over the years. The supply was to be limited only to hotels and restaurants, clubs and bars which are registered to operate. Operational hours are also to be considered and reduced to ensure no clubs and bars run throughout the day and this served as a major significance in the reduction of alcohol consumption.
The education department adopted an extensive curriculum on how to deal with drugs and alcohol consumption. This is aimed at educating teenagers on how to handle their emotions, friendships and making them aware of the factors that lead to alcoholism and ways to avoid such tempting instances. Family focused programmers that reflect on parenting styles were also initiated and were aimed at making parents more restrictive on alcohol consumption and to take stern actions against teenage alcoholism.
  Drug and Alcohol Population and Community Programs Unit (DAPCP) developed programs such as peer-led approaches, school-based interventions and family support with an aim of providing guidelines to the teenagers at a personal level, group level, school level and family level in order to eradicate high levels of alcohol consumption among the teenagers. A step has also been taken to educate pregnant women and their partners on the dangers of alcohol consumption during pregnancy and the possible outcomes of raising drunkard children.
Heavy advertisement done on alcoholic products has greatly contributed to alcohol consumption amongst teenagers. The government through media verification boards has chose to limit the number of times alcoholic drinks are advertised and its timing pushed to late evening when adolescents are off to sleep so as to limit its influence to alcoholism. The high range of factors that the government is involved in are providing support to the teenagers and urging parents to take part in ensuring that their children are safe and not exposed to risky alcoholism. The government has issued quite  number of sanctions on alcohol dealers including warning them from selling alcohol to underage people which has also seen a decline in alcohol consumption among the teenagers.
Rusby, Light, Crowley, & Westling, (2018) investigated on parents relationship to teenagers and alcohol related social norms among youths aged 14-17 years in the United States. Using protocol for a respondent driven sampling study identified that some social beliefs, norms and customs passed from elders, parents, relatives and peers to teenagers has greatly contributed to early alcohol drinking behaviors among a majority of teenagers. Using a cross sectional quantitative study, 672 adolescents from sporting groups were sampled.
Data was collected, analyzed descriptively and demographically to explore the connection between common understanding of norms and behaviors among individuals in the United States and how they translate into reported alcoholism among the teenagers. A social norm is an expectation of acceptance of a behavior shared in common among a group of individuals. Alcohol is used in most cultures in Australia to mark rites of passage. Adolescents who attend these parties have access to taking alcohol since this is a major component of the ceremony.
  Due to little or no restriction teenagers take advantage and exposed to risky alcohol, the study found out that drinking leads to poor conduct and behaviors such as uncontrolled sexual behavior and harassment, fighting resulting from drunkenness, injuries due to falls bans and sometimes road trauma and sometimes hospitalization due to intoxication. It was also reported that lower levels of attachment to the community is another major factor that has led to drunkenness among adolescents in Australia. These teenagers who have little or no guardians to show them the way find their way into drinking alcohol as a way to escape the challenges they face in life and also as a way to obtain fulfillment and avoid pressure mounting from deep thoughts. Those teenagers who are strongly affiliated to heavy chain drunkards find their way into drinking since their models may introduce them into drinking as a way to spent their leisure, enjoy themselves and also as a way to reduce life associated tensions.
  Kelly, Chan, Mason, and Williams (2016) on effects of alcohol on mid schooling teenagers, denote that it leads to poor academic performance and even drop out. The models may provide for them money as they start drinking and along the way they may have to find it rough since their models may dislike them due too much dependency. Access to alcohol has not also been left out since some teenagers simply drink because alcohol is at their reach (Nickerson et al., 2014). This shows that if alcohol was put out of their reach then they would be safe from alcohol consumption but due to parental negligence teenagers have become uncontrollable in issues to deal with alcohol
Alcohol consumption among teenagers in Australia has been brought about by a number of factors which when handled with slight seriousness generations to come can enjoy an atmosphere that is free from alcohol consumption. Janssen et al. (2018) on alcohol expectations states that teenager’s get drunk with expectations that they will be models. Parental negligence has been a major factor which has led to increased alcohol consumption by teenagers. Parents in the rural areas do nothing to restrict or guide their adolescents on alcohol related issues while those in urban areas over-emphasize the advantages of alcoholism forgetting the negative effects of it.
Norms and customs have also taken center stage where alcohol marks many rites of passage and adolescents are allowed to drink freely (Hemphill et al., 2014). Peer pressure majorly in schools has led to brooding students who are drunkard folks. Wanting to know how it feels to be drunk is a way peers lure others into alcoholism. On binge drinking Jones et al mentions that adolescent’s perception on alcohol has led many into drunkenness the social media has also been a negative platform where drinking and alcoholism is emphasized and the effects of it are hidden from the general public hence teenagers are lured through heavy advertisement on alcoholic products.
 Working parents spent too little or no time with their adolescent children hence they lack parental guidance (Jones, Gordon, & Andrews, 2016). This leads them to seek help from people who may mislead them or result to drinking as a way to stay sober and keep off loneliness. Socially unstable families where parents are in constant conflicts traumatize the teenagers who in turn result into alcoholism as a way of escaping and releasing stress. Children brought up by parents who brew local liquor get introduced to drunkenness at a tender age not necessarily by parents but by the drunkards who invade their personal space therefore majority of the children brought up in the slum areas are vulnerable to alcoholism.
Role models also play a major role in influencing the life of those who by all means try to emulate them (Shih et al., 2015). For example if a teenager admires a given musician who drinks alcohol, puffs bhang, injects cocaine and sniffs glue, the teenager will find possible ways to do exactly what their models are doing no matter the cost. Such adolescents sometimes get involved in criminal activities that endanger their lives while they are seeking to satisfy their ego. The remedies to these factors are strict governance on liquor dealers and reducing operational hour’s alcohol dealing agencies. parents both in rural and urban setting should play their role in bringing up responsible future citizens. The social media platforms e.g. advertising should be regulated to minimize exposure of teenagers to alcoholism. Norms and customs that are by passed by time should be avoided at all cost.
Parental negligence has led to teenager’s alcohol consumption in Australia according to Melissa L Graham et al. some parents go to an extent of providing alcohol to their teenagers which is not only dangerous but also detrimental to the personality of the teenager. This however has been corrected after a series of discussion where many parents took it positively and will now guide their teens on alcoholism. Alcoholism is associated with a lot risks and dangers such as injuries, sexual exploitation, intoxication and road trauma at times. For a student who drinks with either encounter failure in school or total school dropout. To get rid of these problems the government parents and the entire community should come up ways to ensure that alcoholism is at its lowest consumption amongst teenagers.
Hemphill, S. A., Heerde, J. A., Scholes, B. K. E., Herrenkohl, T. I., Toumbourou, J. W., & Catalano, R. F. (2014). Effects of Early Adolescent Alcohol Use on Mid-Adolescent School Performance and Connection: A Longitudinal Study of Students in Victoria, Australia and Washington State, United States. Journal of School Health, 84(11), 706–715.
Janssen, T., Treloar Padovano, H., Merrill, J. E., & Jackson, K. M. (2018). Developmental relations between alcohol expectancies and social norms in predicting alcohol onset. Developmental Psychology, 54(2), 281–292. (Supplemntal)
Jones, S. C., Gordon, C. S., & Andrews, K. (2016). What is “binge drinking”? Perceptions of Australian adolescents and adults, and implications for mass media campaigns. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 40(5), 487–489.
Kelly, A. B., Chan, G. C. K., Mason, W. A., & Williams, J. W. (2015). The relationship between psychological distress and adolescent polydrug use. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 29(3), 787–793.
Lam, T., Lenton, S., Ogeil, R., Burns, L., Aiken, A., Chikritzhs, T., … Allsop, S. (2017). Most recent risky drinking session with Australian teenagers. Australian & New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 41(1), 105–110.
Lemyre, A., Poliakova, N., Vitaro, F., Tremblay, R. E., Boivin, M., & Bélanger, R. E. (2018). Does shyness interact with peer group affiliation in predicting substance use in adolescence? Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 32(1), 132–139.
Mason, W. A., Toumbourou, J. W., Herrenkohl, T. I., Hemphill, S. A., Catalano, R. F., & Patton, G. C. (2011). Early age alcohol use and later alcohol problems in adolescents: Individual and peer mediators in a bi-national study. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 25(4), 625–633.
Mutti-Packer, S., Hodgins, D. C., el-Guebaly, N., Casey, D. M., Currie, S. R., Williams, R. J., … Schopflocher, D. P. (2017). Problem gambling symptomatology and alcohol misuse among adolescents: A parallel-process latent growth curve model. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 31(4), 447–456. (Supplemental)
Nickerson, A., Barnes, J. B., Creamer, M., Forbes, D., McFarlane, A. C., O’Donnell, M., … Bryant, R. A. (2014). The temporal relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder and problem alcohol use following traumatic injury. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 123(4), 821–834. (Supplemental)
O’Leary-Barrett, M., Castellanos-Ryan, N., Pihl, R. O., & Conrod, P. J. (2016). Mechanisms of personality-targeted intervention effects on adolescent alcohol misuse, internalizing and externalizing symptoms. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 84(5), 438–452.
Peacock, A., Bruno, R., & Martin, F. H. (2013). Patterns of use and motivations for consuming alcohol mixed with energy drinks. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 27(1), 202–206.
Pocuca, N., Hides, L., Quinn, C. A., White, M. J., Mewton, L., Newton, N. C., … McBride, N. (2018). The interactive effects of personality profiles and perceived peer drinking on early adolescent drinking. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 32(2), 230–236. (Supplemental)
Rusby, J. C., Light, J. M., Crowley, R., & Westling, E. (2018). Influence of parent–youth relationship, parental monitoring, and parent substance use on adolescent substance use onset. Journal of Family Psychology, 32(3), 310–320.
Shih, R. A., Mullins, L., Ewing, B. A., Miyashiro, L., Tucker, J. S., Pedersen, E. R., … D’Amico, E. J. (2015). Associations between neighborhood alcohol availability and young adolescent alcohol use. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 29(4), 950–959.
Waldron, J. S., Malone, S. M., McGue, M., & Iacono, W. G. (2017). Genetic and environmental sources of covariation between early drinking and adult functioning. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 31(5), 589–600. (Supplemental)

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