Epidemiology of Alcohol Abuse Among US Immigrant Populations
The knowledge of racial and ethnic variations in alcohol problems among US immigrants is limited. This study compared the prevalence and correlates of alcohol problems among US foreign-born versus US-natives by race-ethnicity using data from the National Epidemiological Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions.
Alcohol problem outcomes included clinical diagnosis, heavy alcohol use, and intoxication. The foreign-born respondents had lower rates of alcohol problems than the US-born, but some variations were noted by race-ethnicity. The risk of clinical diagnosis due to traumatic events was higher for the foreign-born population.
Future research should continue to investigate the role of stress, the specific traumatic events most problematic for immigrant groups, and the interplay of the original and host culture in shaping the patterns of alcohol problems in the immigrant population.