A randomized clinical trial of a targeted intervention to moderate alcohol use and alcohol-related problems in at-risk adolescents
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This study investigated the effectiveness of a targeted intervention program aimed at at-risk adolescents in a randomized clinical trial design (N=107). This program combined intervention methods which have been proven effective in reducing drinking in young adults, such as an expectancy challenge, cognitive behavioral skill training and brief motivational feedback. Additionally, this intervention contained the new element of discussing biological, cognitive and social risk factors for developing alcohol problems. We investigated whether this seven session program was successful in changing cognitive determinants of drinking behavior and consequently in moderating alcohol use and the development of alcohol-related problems in at-risk adolescents. The intervention was effective in changing several of the targeted cognitive determinants. However, despite the changes in these cognitive determinants of drinking, the experimental group did not show a significant difference in decrease of drinking at posttest compared with the control group. The results did not yield support for any differential long term effects of the intervention. We concluded that although the present intervention successfully changed important cognitive determinants of drinking more is needed to change subsequent drinking behavior in at-risk adolescents.
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