Harsh physical punishment as a specific childhood adversity linked to adult drinking consequences: evidence from China
Article first published online: 20 SEP 2010
© 2010 The Authors, Addiction © 2010 Society for the Study of Addiction
Volume 105, Issue 12, pages 2097–2105, December 2010
How to Cite
Cheng, H. G., Anthony, J. C. and Huang, Y. (2010), Harsh physical punishment as a specific childhood adversity linked to adult drinking consequences: evidence from China. Addiction, 105: 2097–2105. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2010.03079.x
- Issue published online: 3 NOV 2010
- Article first published online: 20 SEP 2010
- Submitted 29 December 2009; initial review completed 1 March 2010; final version accepted 28 April 2010
- Alcohol use disorder;
- childhood physical punishment;
- population survey;
- structural equation modeling
Aims The aim of the current study is to estimate the association between childhood physical punishment (CPP) and level of alcohol use disorder (AUD), using two different approaches to take other childhood adversities into account.
Design and setting Population survey using face-to-face interviews to a representative sample of non-institutionalized adult residents of Beijing and Shanghai, China.
Participants A total of 5201 participants aged 18–70 years.
Measurements A version of the World Mental Health Composite International Diagnostic Interview was used. Standardized assessments covered early life experiences of childhood physical punishment, other childhood adversities, parental drinking problems, childhood conduct problems and clinical features of AUD.
Findings A robust association linking CPP and level of AUD was found, holding other childhood adversities constant (probit coefficient = 0.70, 95% CI = 0.40, 1.00) via covariate terms in structural equations modeling. Furthermore, there was evidence that CPP might exert an additional influence on level of AUD over and above a generally noxious family environment (probit coefficient = 0.20, 95% CI = 0.02, 0.38).
Conclusions There appears to be a robust association between reports of harsh punishment in childhood and alcohol dependence in adulthood adjusting for a range of possible confounding factors. Whether the association is causal or whether both are related to a common underlying factor or recall bias needs to be investigated further.