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ATTC Messenger May 2023: Novel Approaches to Engaging Emerging Adults with Risky Alcohol Use and Enhancing the Efficacy of Alcohol Brief Motivational Interventions

ATTC Messenger May 2023 Featured Article

Emerging Adults (EAs; ages 18–25) report greater alcohol use than any other age group (roughly 35% report recent heavy episodic or binge drinking) (Hingson et al., 2017), yet very few voluntarily participate in existing brief intervention programs (Helle et al., 2021). Although most young people gradually reduce their drinking without any treatment as they assume more adult responsibilities in their mid to late 20s, many show a developmentally persistent pattern of alcohol use disorder, and even those who eventually reduce their drinking experience substantial alcohol-related harm prior to “maturing out” (Liguori & Lonbaken, 2015).

Brief Motivational Interventions (BMIs) that include personalized drinking feedback delivered in a motivational interviewing style are a promising approach to reaching young people who demonstrate risk drinking in educational or healthcare settings and have demonstrated reductions in drinking across numerous clinical trials with emerging adults (Cronce et al., 2022; Tanner-Smith & Lipsey, 2015)). However, there are three key limitations to the potential public health impact of BMIs as an alcohol risk reduction approach (Murphy et al., 2022).

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May 9, 2023
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