Public and private religious involvement and initiation of alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use in Black and White adolescent girls

Carolyn E. Sartor, Alison E. Hipwell, Tammy Chung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: This longitudinal study aimed to identify variation by race in the associations between religious involvement and initiation of alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use, including distinctions by substance or type of religious involvement, in Black and White adolescent girls. Methods: Data were drawn from interviews conducted at ages 11 through 17 with 2172 Pittsburgh Girls Study participants (56.8% Black; 43.2% White). Two indicators of public religious involvement, religious service attendance and participation in other religious activities, and two indicators of private religious involvement, prayer, and importance of religion were queried. A series of Cox proportional hazards regression analyses were conducted to identify independent effects of religious involvement indicators on initiation of each substance. Results: Prior to adjusting for socioenvironmental and psychosocial factors (e.g., parental monitoring), importance of religion predicted initiation of alcohol use across race and cigarette and marijuana use in White but not Black girls. Participation in other religious activities also predicted marijuana use initiation only in White girls. In adjusted models, importance of religion remained significant for cigarette use initiation in White girls (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.68, 95% confidence intervals [CI]: 0.53–0.88) and participation in other religious activities remained significant for marijuana use initiation in White girls (HR = 0.63, CI: 0.47–0.83). Conclusions: The protective effects of religious involvement against cigarette and marijuana use initiation are more robust for White than Black adolescent girls and overall relatively weak for alcohol use initiation. Furthermore, importance placed on religion may be a better indicator than religious service attendance of risk for adolescent substance use initiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)447-456
Number of pages10
JournalSocial Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology
Volume55
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology
  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Keywords

  • Adolescent girls
  • Alcohol
  • Black/African American
  • Cigarettes
  • Marijuana
  • Religious involvement

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Public and private religious involvement and initiation of alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use in Black and White adolescent girls'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this