"Maturing Out" of Binge and Problem Drinking

Matthew R. Lee, Kenneth J. Sher

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article reviews literature aiming to explain the widespread reductions in binge and problem drinking that begin around the transition to young adulthood (i.e., "maturing out"). Whereas most existing literature on maturing out emphasizes contextual effects of transitions into adult roles and responsibilities, this article also reviews recent work demonstrating further effects of young adult personality maturation. As possible mechanisms of naturally occurring desistance, these processes could inform both public health and clinical interventions aimed at spurring similar types of drinking-related behavior change. This article also draws attention to evidence that the normative trend of age-related reductions in problem drinking extends well beyond young adulthood. Specific factors that may be particularly relevant to problem drinking desistance in these later periods are considered within a broader life span developmental framework.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-42
Number of pages12
JournalAlcohol research : current reviews
Volume39
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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