Adolescents exposed to trauma are more likely to engage in alcohol and marijuana use compared to their nontrauma-exposed counterparts; however, little is known about factors that may moderate these associations. This study examined the potential moderating effect of cognitions relevant to exposure to trauma (i.e., negative view of self, world, and future) in the association between posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) diagnosis and substance use among a psychiatric inpatient sample of 188 adolescents. Findings were that PTSD diagnosis was not significantly associated with substance-use diagnoses, but was associated with substance-use symptoms, accounting for 2.9% and 9.6% of the variance in alcohol and marijuana symptoms, respectively. The association between PTSD diagnosis and substance use symptoms, however, was moderated by negative cognitions, with PTSD and high negative cognitions (but not low negative cognitions) being significantly positively associated with substance use symptoms. The relevant cognitions differed for alcohol symptoms and marijuana symptoms. Children and adolescents who experience trauma and PTSD may benefit from early interventions that focus on cognitive processes as one potential moderator in the development of posttrauma substance use.
Traditional and Simplified Chinese Abstracts by AsianSTSS