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Publication - Statistics Publication

Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey (SALSUS): Alcohol Report 2015

Published: 25 Oct 2016
Part of:
Health and social care
ISBN:
9781786525321

This report presents the alcohol findings from the 2015 wave of the Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey (SALSUS).

59 page PDF

3.5MB

59 page PDF

3.5MB

Contents
Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey (SALSUS): Alcohol Report 2015
2 Prevalence and Key trends

59 page PDF

3.5MB

2 Prevalence and Key trends

Summary of key changes over time

Among all groups, the proportion of pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink has decreased since 2013 (continuing the trend seen since 2004). However, there has been an increase in the proportion of 13 year old girls and boys who reported being drunk in the past week, see Figure 2.1.

Figure 2.1 Summary of trends in alcohol use between 2013 and 2015

Figure 2.1 Summary of trends in alcohol use between 2013 and 2015

Ever had a drink (a whole drink, not just a sip)

2015 FIGURES Less than a third of 13 year olds pupils (28%) have ever had an alcoholic drink, while two-thirds of 15 year olds (66%) had ever had one.
TRENDS OVER TIME Among all groups, the proportion of pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink has been steadily decreasing since 2004 and prevalence in 2015 is at the lowest since the survey began (Figure 2.2).
GENDER DIFFERENCES At 13 years old, boys were slightly more likely to have ever had an alcoholic drink than girls. However, at 15 years old, the pattern was reversed and girls were slightly more likely than boys to have ever had a drink (Figure 2.2).

Figure 2.2 Proportion of pupils who have ever had a drink, by sex and age (1990-2015)

Q. Have you ever had a proper alcoholic drink - a whole drink, not just a sip?

Figure 2.2 Proportion of pupils who have ever had a drink, by sex and age (1990-2015)

Base: all pupils (for full base size information please see Appendix B)

Drank in the last week

2015 FIGURES Among all pupils, only a small proportion had drunk in the 7 days prior to completing the survey: 4% of 13 year olds and 17% of 15 year olds.
TRENDS OVER TIME After a large decrease in prevalence between 2010 and 2013, drinking in the last week has remained unchanged between 2013 and 2015, with the exception of a small decrease among 15 year olds boys: 19% drank in the last week in 2013, compared with 16% in 2015 (Figure 2.3).
GENDER DIFFERENCES 15 year old girls were slightly more likely than 15 year old boys to have drunk alcohol in the last week: 19% of 15 year olds girls drank in the last week, compared with 16% of 15 year old boys. There was no difference between 13 year old boys and girls (Figure 2.3).

Figure 2.3 Proportion of pupils who drank in the last week, by sex and age (1990-2015)

Q. When did you last have an alcoholic drink?

Figure 2.3 Proportion of pupils who drank in the last week, by sex and age (1990-2015)

Base: all pupils (for full base size information please see Appendix B)

Ever been drunk

2015 FIGURES Less than half of 13 year olds (45%) and around two-thirds of 15 year olds (68%) who had ever had alcohol, had been drunk at least once.
TRENDS OVER TIME While there has been a small decline in the proportion of pupils who have ever been drunk between 2002 and 2015, there has been little change in prevalence since 2013 (Figure 2.4). The only statistically significant change has been a small decrease among 15 year old boys (from 68% in 2013 to 65% in 2015).
GENDER DIFFERENCES Among both age groups, girls were more likely than boys to have been drunk at least once, the first time a gender difference has appeared among 13 year olds for this measure (Figure 2.4).

Figure 2.4 Proportion of pupils, who have ever had a drink, who have ever been drunk, by sex and age (2002-2015)

Q. Have you ever been drunk?

Figure 2.4 Proportion of pupils, who have ever had a drink, who have ever been drunk, by sex and age (2002-2015)

Base: pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink (for full base size information please see Appendix B)

Been drunk in the last week

2015 FIGURES Just under half of 13 year olds (47%) and over half of 15 year olds (57%) who had a drink in the last week, had been drunk in the same time period.
TRENDS OVER TIME Among 13 year olds who had a drink in the last week, the proportion of both boys and girls who had been drunk in the same time period has increased since 2013. Among 15 year olds, there was a decrease in the proportion of girls who had been drunk in the last week and no change in the proportion of boys reporting the same (Figure 2.5).
GENDER DIFFERENCES Among those who had a drink in the last week, girls were more likely than boys to have been drunk in the same period. This was true among both 13 and 15 year olds.

Figure 2.5 Proportion of pupils who have drunk alcohol in the last week, who had been drunk in the same period, by age and sex (2006-2015)

Q. Have you been drunk in the last 7 days?

Figure 2.5 Proportion of pupils who have drunk alcohol in the last week, who had been drunk in the same period, by age and sex (2006-2015)

Base: pupils who have drunk alcohol in the last week (for full base size information please see Appendix B)

Age first had a drink

2015 FIGURES The mean age that 15 year olds first had a drink was 13 years and 2 months and the mean age they first got drunk was 13 years and 10 months.
TRENDS OVER TIME The age at which pupils first tried alcohol and first got drunk has been gradually increasing since 2010 (Figure 2.6).
GENDER DIFFERENCES 15 year old girls were slightly older than boys when they first tried drinking (13 years and 4 months among girls, compared with 13 years and 1 months among boys) and first got drunk (13 years and 11 months among girls and 13 years and 8 months among boys).

Figure 2.6 Mean age at which 15 year old pupils who have ever had a drink, first had an alcoholic drink and first got drunk (2008-2015)

Q. How old were you when you first drank alcohol/got drunk?

Figure 2.6 Mean age at which 15 year old pupils who have ever had a drink, first had an alcoholic drink and first got drunk (2008-2015)

Base: 15 year olds who have ever had a drink (for full base size information please see Appendix B)

Drinking locations

2015 FIGURES The most common drinking location for 13 year olds was at their own home. The next most common places were someone else's home, at a party with friends or out in the street. Among 15 year olds, the most common places to drink alcohol were at a party with friends, at their home and at someone else's home (Figure 2.7).
TRENDS OVER TIME Among 13 year olds, there has been an increase in the proportion of pupils who usually drink out in the street between 2013 and 2015 (21% in 2015, compared with 15% in 2013) and a decrease in the proportion of pupils usually drinking at home (53% in 2015, compared with 58% in 2013). The only change over time among 15 year olds was a slight decrease in the proportion of pupils who usually drink at a party with friends (48% in 2015, compared with 52% in 2013).
GENDER DIFFERENCES Boys were slightly more likely than girls to drink in their own home (48% of boys, compared with 44% of girls) whereas girls were more likely than boys to have drunk at someone else's home (45% of girls, compared with 36% of boys) or at a party with friends (43% of girls, compared with 31% of boys).

Figure 2.7 Usual drinking locations, among those who have ever had a drink, by age (2015)

Q. When you drink alcohol, where are you usually?

Figure 2.7 Usual drinking locations, among those who have ever had a drink, by age (2015)

Base: pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink (13 year olds, 3,141) (15 year olds, 7,054)

Effects of alcohol

2015 FIGURES Among 13 year olds, less than half (45%) of those who had ever had a drink had experienced one (or more) of the negative effects listed in Figure 2.8 as a result of drinking alcohol in the last year, compared with over half of 15 year olds (59%). Among both age groups, the most common negative consequence was doing something they regretted or vomiting (Figure 2.8).
TRENDS OVER TIME The proportion of 13 year olds girls experiencing at least one effect increased from 44% in 2013 to 48% in 2015. The proportion of 13 year old boys and 15 year olds experiencing at least one effect remained unchanged.
GENDER DIFFERENCES There were a number of gender differences in terms of the individual effects of alcohol use. The most notable were that girls were more likely than boys to have an argument due to drinking alcohol (34% of girls compared with 24% of boys), whereas boys were more likely to have had a fight (16% of boys compared with 12% of girls).

Figure 2.8 Proportion of pupils who have ever drunk alcohol who experienced negative effects as a result of drinking alcohol, by age (2015)

Q In the past year, as a result of drinking alcohol have you…?

Figure 2.8 Proportion of pupils who have ever drunk alcohol who experienced negative effects as a result of drinking alcohol, by age (2015)

Base: pupils who have ever had an alcoholic drink (13 year olds, 3,364) (15 year olds, 7,261)


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