The present study sought to extend empirical inquiry related to the role of parenting on adolescent sexual risk-taking by using latent class analysis (LCA) to identify patterns of adolescent-reported mother responsiveness and autonomy-granting in early adolescence and examine associations with sexual risk-taking in mid- and late-adolescence. Utilizing a sample of 12- to 14-year-old adolescents (N = 4,743) from the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY97), results identified a four-class model of maternal responsiveness and autonomy-granting: low responsiveness/high autonomy-granting, moderate responsiveness/moderate autonomy-granting, high responsiveness/low autonomy-granting, high responsiveness/moderate autonomy-granting. Membership in the low responsiveness/high autonomy-granting class predicted greater sexual risk-taking in mid- and late-adolescence compared to all other classes, and membership in the high responsiveness/ moderate autonomy-granting class predicted lower sexual risk-taking. Gender and ethnic differences in responsiveness and autonomy-granting class membership were also found, potentially informing gender and ethnic disparities of adolescent sexual risk-taking.
autonomy-granting; latent class analysis; responsiveness; sexual risk-taking
In this study, late adolescents/early adults whose mothers were living with HIV (MLH) were interviewed in order to explore their perceptions of what it had been like for them to grow up under the shadow of their mothers’ illness. Adolescents were asked to describe what the difficult aspects of growing up with an HIV-positive mother were as well as what, if any, were the more rewarding aspects. Interviews were conducted in 2009 - 2010 with a random sample of 40 adolescents being followed in a longitudinal assessment study. All study participants were English or Spanish speaking. Mean age was 18.9 (SD = 1.9) years; 67.5% were Latino; 27.5% African American; and 5% other/multi-racial. Results revealed that growing up with an HIV-positive mother had both challenges as well as rewards. On the challenge side, adolescents mentioned six main issues: (1) disappointment regarding mothers’ missing of childhood activities and events; (2) worry about mothers’ health; (3) worry about the possibility of mothers’ death; (4) increased burden of adult responsibilities/caregiving; (5) feelings of secrecy/stigma associated with HIV/AIDS; and (6) need to self-monitor behavior and communication to avoid maternal stress. On the positive side, adolescents mentioned three main rewarding aspects of growing up with an HIV-positive mother: increased closeness in the mother-child relationship; fostering of positive personality traits (e.g., resilience, gratitude, open-mindedness); and “perks” accorded to HIV-affected families.
HIV+ Mothers; Family Functioning; Chronic Illness; Qualitative Interviews; Longitudinal Study
This study used data from 5,382 adolescents from the 1997 U.S. National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY97) to investigate developmental pathways of alcohol use, marijuana use, sexual risk behaviors, and delinquency across ages 14 to 20, examine interrelationships among these risk behaviors across adolescence, and evaluate association between risk behavior trajectories and depressive symptoms in adolescence. Group-based dual trajectory modeling, examining trajectories of two outcomes over time, revealed strong interrelationships among developmental trajectories of the four risk behaviors, and indicated potential pathways to co-occurring risk behaviors. Adolescents with higher levels of alcohol use or marijuana use were more likely to engage in higher levels of early sexual risk-taking and delinquency. Moreover, adolescents involved in higher levels of delinquency were at higher risk for engaging in early sexual risk-taking. Also belonging to the highest risk trajectory of any of the four risk behaviors was positively associated with depressive symptoms in adolescence.
alcohol use; delinquent behaviors; group-based dual trajectory model; marijuana use; sexual risk behaviors
The purpose of this 12-year longitudinal study was to assess the effects of maternal HIV/AIDS on child/adolescent well-being and behavioral outcomes, extending an earlier published account.
Interviews were conducted with 66 pairs of healthy children and their mothers living with HIV/AIDS (MLH), who are participants in the Parents And children Coping Together (PACT) project begun in 1997. All study participants were English or Spanish speaking. About half (48.5%) of the youth were female. Maternal health status (e.g., viral load biomedical marker, illness symptoms, physical functioning and depression) and child/adolescent outcomes (e.g., depression, anxiety/worry, aggression, and self-concept) were assessed over 16 time-points.
Using growth curve modeling, results show a negative effect of maternal health status on child/adolescent outcomes, including child/adolescent depression, anxiety/worry, aggression, and self-concept. Interaction effects within the growth models suggest younger children are more impacted by poor maternal health than are older children/adolescents.
This is the first study to follow a cohort of children of MLH over such an extended age range, through late adolescence/early adulthood, to determine the impact of maternal health status throughout the entire developmental period.
HIV; Longitudinal Studies; Child Behavior; Child Development; Adolescent Behavior; Adolescent Development
This study tested components of the AIDS Risk Reduction Model (ARRM) for a sample of methamphetamine-using offenders in drug treatment. Analyses included the first two stages of the ARRM, problem recognition and intention to reduce risk (potential precursors to later possible behavior change), assessing predictors of intentions to increase condom use, reduce other sexual risk, and disinfect needles. Path analysis results showed potential applicability of the ARRM as a basis for intervention development for this population. There was a consistent effect of self-efficacy for risk reduction strategies, as well as direct or indirect effects of problem recognition factors (AIDS knowledge, peer norms), on the three intention indicators. Prior sex risk behavior (condom use) was directly negatively related to intention to use condoms; prior needle use was indirectly negatively related to intention to disinfect. Intention to use condoms was lower for females. Results can help identify areas for intervention development.
methamphetamine; HIV risk behaviors; AIDS Risk Reduction Model; heterosexual; offenders
This study examined the trajectories of sexual risk behaviors among adolescents from ages 15 to 23, and factors associated with those trajectories. The sample was 5,419 adolescents from the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Using group-based trajectory modeling, five distinctive trajectory groups were identified. The High group had a high and increased risk trajectory over the observed ages. The Decreased group had a risk trajectory that accelerated before age 19, but decreased afterwards. The risk trajectories of the Increased-Early and Increased-Late groups were low at age 15, but increased significantly starting at ages 16 and 18 for the groups, respectively. Participants in the Low group remained at low risk over time. Sexual risk behaviors were also positively associated with alcohol use, marijuana use, and delinquency. Results highlight the need for intervention efforts to consider developmental timing of sexual risk behaviors and their associations with other problem behaviors.
Group-based Trajectory Model; sexual risks; gender; alcohol/drug use
In this study we explore associations between child and adult victimization and sexual risk behavior in 118 young, HIV positive women. Prior research has demonstrated associations between victimization and engagement in sexual risk behavior. Victimization sequelae can include disrupted assertiveness and communication, as well as increased association with risky partners, both of which are also linked with engagement in sexual risk behavior. Thus, we propose a model wherein victimization is linked to sexual risk behavior through two mediating pathways, sexual communication and affiliation with risky partners. We also examine the moderating effects of the presence of an anxiety or depressive disorder on the path from child to adult victimization. Results suggested that adult victimization was associated with unprotected sex with a main partner; however, this association was mediated by less sexual communication and having a risky partner. Trends toward significance were found for depression and anxiety as a moderator of the relationship between child and adult victimization. Child victimization did not have direct effects on unprotected sex. Implications for secondary prevention of HIV and healthy intimate relationships are discussed.
Victimization; HIV; Women; Sexual risk
Adolescent children of mothers with HIV face a host of stressors that place them at increased risk for poor outcomes. Using covariance structure analysis, this study examines adolescent risk outcomes and their relationships to maternal health, as well as the potentially protective factors of family environment and self-competence. The final model indicated that poor maternal health was negatively related to a protective family environment, which in turn was negatively related to adolescent risk outcomes. A protective family environment was also positively related to adolescent self-competence, which was negatively related to adolescent risk outcomes. Implications of the study are discussed, including how these findings can influence interventions aimed at reducing the risk for poor outcomes among adolescent youth with HIV-infected mothers.
Maternal HIV; Adolescent Risk Outcomes; Family Environment; Self-competence
This study utilized data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth to investigate risk trajectories for delinquency and factors associated with different trajectories, particularly substance use. The sample (N = 8,984) was 49% female. A group-based trajectory model was applied, which identified four distinct trajectories for both males and females: (1) a High group with delinquency rates consistently higher than other groups, with some decrease across the age range; (2) a Decreased group, beginning at high levels with substantial decrease to near zero; (3) a Moderate group experiencing some decline but remaining at moderate rates of delinquency through most of the age range; and (4) a consistently Low group, having low rates of delinquency declining to near zero by mid- to late-teens. The Low group was distinguished by several protective factors, including higher rates of maternal authoritative parenting style, possible lower acculturation (higher rates of non-English spoken at home), higher rates of religious activity, later substance use initiation, lower rates of early delinquent activity, less early experience with neighborhood or personal violence, and higher rates of perceiving penalty for wrongdoing. Conversely, the High group was characterized by several vulnerability factors—essentially the converse of the protective factors above.
NLSY; Risk Trajectories; Delinquency; Substance Use
Healthy Choices is a motivational interviewing intervention targeting multiple risk behaviors among HIV-positive youth. This study investigated the effects of this intervention program specifically on alcohol and marijuana use. Youth living with HIV (n=143, mean age=20.7, 51.5% male) were recruited from four sites in the United States, and randomly assigned to intervention or control conditions. The four-session intervention focused on two of three possible problem behaviors based on entry screening; this study focused on 143 HIV-positive youth who received the intervention for substance use. At 15-month follow-up past-week alcohol use was significantly lower for intervention youth than control youth (39.7% versus 53.6%, χ2=2.81, 0.05
Mothers play an important role in promoting the sexual health of their adolescent children. Fifty-seven HIV-positive mothers with adolescent children participated in an in-depth, qualitative interview regarding whether they have talked to their children about safer sex and STD prevention, including at what age they began such discussions, and what messages they gave to their children. The majority of mothers (95%) had talked with their child about safer sex; some began such discussions when the children were as young as 6 years old, but most began when the children were around 12 years old. Mothers’ messages fell into the following areas: (1) protecting oneself from STDs; (2) giving factual information regarding STDs, including HIV; (3) avoiding pregnancy; (4) empowering and respecting oneself; and (5) communicating with sexual partners. The mothers’ own HIV status impacted the discussions with their children. Content of mothers’ messages, child reactions, and child outcomes are discussed.
HIV+ Mothers; Adolescents; Sexual Health; Qualitative
Adjusting to chronic illness is very complicated for families with children, as they are already faced with the challenge of development and childrearing. In this study, qualitative interviews were conducted with HIV positive mothers on a number of issues related to being an HIV positive mother raising young children. One topic of the interview was whether or not they felt that HIV had caused them to miss activities with their children while the children were growing up, what types of activities they had missed, the age of the child for each example, and how HIV had led to missing these activities. Interviews were conducted in 2008 with a random sample of 57 mothers being followed in a longitudinal assessment study. All study participants were English or Spanish speaking. Mean age was 44.1 (SD = 5.6) years; 47% were Latina; 35% African American; 11% White; and 7% other race. About 60% of the mothers disclosed that their HIV status had caused them to miss out on activities with their children while their children were growing up, ranging from daily care activities to major school and extra-curricular activities. Some mothers missed significant amounts of time with their children due to hospitalizations. In some cases mothers felt forced into a choice between mothering ability and their own health, including adherence to medications. Implications for the mothers and the children are discussed.
Family Activities; HIV positive Mothers; Qualitative Interviews; Chronic Illness
The Teaching, Raising, And Communicating with Kids (TRACK) program was a longitudinal pilot-trial intervention designed to assist mothers living with HIV (MLH) to disclose their serostatus to their young children (age 6 – 12 years).
MLH and child dyads (N = 80 dyads) were recruited and randomized to intervention or control; the intervention group had three individual sessions and one follow-up phone call. The sessions focused on preparing MLH for disclosure through behavioral exercises utilizing Derlaga’s model of HIV-disclosure. Both MLH and their child were assessed across multiple time-points (baseline, 3-, 6-, and 9-months) regarding disclosure of HIV status, and specific outcome variables (i.e., relationship context, mother’s health, child’s mental health, and family outcomes).
MLH in the intervention group were six times more likely to disclose their HIV status than those in the control group (O.R. 6.33, 95% C.I.: 1.64 – 24.45), with 33% disclosing in the intervention group compared to 7.3% in the control group. MLHs in the intervention group showed increases in disclosure self-efficacy across time, increased communication with their child, and improvement in emotional functioning. Children of MLHs in the intervention group exhibited reductions in depression and anxiety, and increases in happiness.
TRACK was found to be successful in helping MLH disclose their HIV status to their children, with positive outcomes noted for both MLH and their children.
HIV; mothers; intervention; disclosure
In this study HIV health-related quality of life (HIV-HRQOL) is examined among 179 behaviorally infected adolescent and young adult women. Modifiable psychosocial variables including depression, stigma, social support, and illness acceptance, and the biological end-points of CD4 cell count and viral load were explored in relation to HIV-HRQOL. The three factors of the HIV-HRQOL measure include current life satisfaction, illness related anxiety and illness burden. Bivariate linear regression analysis demonstrated statistically significant associations for all psychosocial variables and HIV-HRQOL factors (p < .01), but not for biological end-points. In multivariate linear regression analysis significant associations remained between: depression (p = .006), illness acceptance (p < .001), social support (p = .001), and current life satisfaction, and depression (p = .012), illness acceptance (p = .015), and illness burden. A trend in association was noted for HIV stigma, with current life satisfaction and illness related anxiety but did not reach statistical significance (p = .097 and p = .109 respectively). Interventions that effectively decrease stigma and depression and increase social support and illness acceptance will likely improve the well-being and quality of life of HIV-infected adolescent women.
More than 50% of youth living with HIV (YLH) have unprotected sex. In previous studies, we reported effects of a motivational interviewing (MI)-based multi-risk reduction intervention, “Healthy Choices,” in improving motivation, depression and viral load in YLH. In this study we report the effect of the intervention on increasing condom use.
Six waves of longitudinal data (n = 142) across a period from baseline through 15 months post intervention were analyzed. The developmental trajectory modeling method was used for program effect evaluation.
Three groups detected with distinct sexual risks were: Persistent low sexual risk (PLSR), delayed high sexual risk (DHSR), and high and growing sexual risk (HGSR) with regard to levels and time trajectories of condom use throughout the trial. Receiving Healthy Choices increased the likelihood to be in the PLSR group (63% vs. 32%, p < 0.01) and reduced the likelihood to be in the DHSR group (16% vs. 50%, p < 0.05). Receiving the intervention was also associated with progressive reductions in no-condom sex for PLSR youth (adjusted β = −0.325, p < 0.01) and HGSR youth (adjusted β = −0.364, p < 0.01).
The MI-based program Healthy Choices, when delivered in clinic settings, can prevent unprotected sex in subgroups of YLH, although more intensive interventions may be needed to change risk trajectories among those at highest risk of transmitting the AIDS virus. Developmental trajectory analysis provides an alternative approach to evaluate program effects for study samples that contain distinct subgroups.
Healthy Choice; HIV positive youth; Sexual risk; Condom use; Randomized controlled trial; Trajectory analysis
Recent developments in biosensor technology allow point-of-use reporting of salivary alpha amylase (sAA) levels while approaching the precision and accuracy of conventional laboratory-based testing. We deployed a portable prototype sAA biosensor in 54 healthy, male dental students during a low stress baseline and during final exams. At baseline, participants completed the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI). At baseline and the exam week, participants provided saliva samples at 10 AM, 1 PM, and 5 PM, and rated concurrent subjective distress. Although subjective distress was higher during exams compared to baseline, sAA levels did not differ between baseline and exams. Higher sAA levels were related to higher concurrent subjective distress, and higher depressive and social isolation symptoms on the BSI were related to lower sAA during exams. Results from this study, in combination with previous validation data, suggest that the sAA biosensor is a promising tool for point-of-use measures of exposure to stress.
salivary alpha amylase; salivary diagnostics; biomarker; stress; biosensor; point of care measurement
This study explored the role of situational temptation, a component of self-efficacy, in adolescent and young adult (ages 16–24) HIV medication adherence by assessing participants' perceptions of their temptation to miss medications in various situations (e.g., when medication causes physical side effects, when there is fear of disclosure of HIV status). Youth (n = 186; 83% African American) were participants in a multisite clinical trial examining the efficacy of a motivational intervention. Data were collected using computer-assisted personal interviewing. Youth believed the most tempting reasons or situations that might lead them to miss their HIV medications to be symptoms (if the medicine caused you to have other physical symptoms) and sick (if the medicine made you sick to your stomach or made you throw up or if it tasted bad), but these were not significantly associated with nonadherence. This suggests disconnection between youths' expectations of temptation and actual tempting situations associated with nonadherence. Situational temptations associated with nonadherence included lack of social support, needing a break from medications, and not seeing a need for medications. Interventions to improve adherence should consider perceptions of HIV medications, particularly the benefits of taking medications and expectations of physical symptoms. Interventionists and clinicians should consider situations that may tempt youth to miss doses of medication and help youth gain insight into these temptations. Emerging methods, such as Ecological Momentary Assessment (e.g., daily diaries, cell phone text messaging), may be useful in gaining insight into the day-to-day experience of youth living with HIV.
Parental HIV infection has been associated with negative outcomes for children, and parenting skills appear to be one mechanism operating in that association. The present study focuses on the relations between maternal stress, parenting, and child functioning among families where the mother is living with HIV. Sixty-nine mothers with at least one child between 6 and 12 years old completed questionnaires at the baseline assessment of an intervention designed to facilitate maternal disclosure of HIV status. Respondents were assessed using multiple measures of stress/anxiety, and parenting skills and child outcomes, including the Parenting Stress Index, the RAND Mental Health Inventory, the Family Routines Questionnaire, and the Child Behavior Checklist. Covariance structural modeling was used to assess the variable relationships, with latent constructs created for maternal anxiety/stress, parenting skills, and child problem behaviors (both direct and indirect effects were evaluated, with a model-based bootstrap used to verify model stability). Results demonstrated that maternal stress was negatively associated with a broad range of parenting skills, and that parenting skills were negatively associated with child problem behaviors. Mothers living with HIV who are anxious about their own health and functioning, and who were more stressed in their parental role, were more likely to exhibit poorer parenting skills—specifically to engage children less frequently in family routines (e.g., eating meals together, having a bedtime routine), poorer parent-child communication, and poorer and less consistent parenting discipline. Not uncommonly, mothers living with HIV experience a range of stressors above and beyond those related to their illness (e.g., poverty, residence in high risk and low resource communities, discrimination). Results demonstrate the need for interventions designed to decrease maternal stress and enhance parenting skills for families affected by HIV.
HIV; maternal stress; parenting; child functioning
Ethnic minority youth living in urban areas experience disproportionately high rates of violent intentional injuries. This study investigates the association of violent intentional injuries with psychological distress and alcohol use among adolescents treated in trauma centers for facial injuries. Interviews were conducted with 67 adolescents treated at two urban trauma centers (predominantly male [86%], and minority [Latino, 72%; African American, 19%]). Adolescents reported experiencing several different types of accidental and assault-related injuries that required medical attention in the past six months. About half (53%) reported experiencing only unintentional injuries (e.g., car accidents, falls, sports injury); 23% experienced one type of intentional injury resulting from either fighting or being attacked; and 24% experienced two types of intentional injuries resulting from both fighting and being attacked. Measures of alcohol use and psychological distress were examined in relation to these three types of injuries. Overall, 30% of study participants reported they had been drinking alcohol at the time of injury. Compared to adolescents without intentional injuries, those who experienced a physical fight and/or attack had higher levels of alcohol problems, depression, paranoia and somatic symptoms, and were more likely to have family members with alcohol problems. There is a considerable need for adolescents with intentional assault-related injuries to be screened for alcohol and mental health problems, and to be referred for appropriate treatment interventions if they score at problem levels.
facial injury; adolescents; psychological distress; substance use behaviors
The impact of maternal HIV and family variables on sexual behaviors of early and middle adolescents was investigated. Data were collected from 118 pairs of HIV-positive mothers and their uninfected early/middle adolescents across four time-points. Descriptive analyses show the prevalence of sexual behaviors in this sample was significantly lower than rates in a comparable sample of adolescents who participated in the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System. Multivariate longitudinal analysis using GEE logistic regression showed adolescent sexual behavior was more likely to occur with adolescent alcohol use, lack of parental monitoring, and poorer physical functioning of HIV+ mothers.
HIV; Adolescent; Risk-Taking; Sexual Behavior
The proximate use of illicit drugs or alcohol (substance use) is the most common precipitator of facial injuries among socioeconomically disadvantaged populations. Reducing these risky behaviors could minimize adverse health sequelae and potential reinjury. The objective of our study was to test whether a culturally competent, personalized motivational intervention incorporated into surgical care could significantly reduce existing substance use behaviors in facial injury patients.
Patients and Methods
Substance-using subjects (n = 218) presenting with facial injuries to a level 1 trauma center were randomly assigned to either a personalized motivational intervention (PMI) condition or a health-information (HI) control condition. After a brief assessment of the individual’s substance use severity and willingness to change these behaviors, both groups attended 2 counseling sessions with a trained interventionist. The PMI subjects (n = 118) received individualized, motivational interventions, whereas the HI subjects (n = 100) received only general health information. Both groups were reassessed at 6 and 12 months postinjury, and changes in substance-use patterns were measured to assess the effects of intervention.
The PMI and HI groups were closely matched on their sociodemographic and substance use characteristics. Subjects in the PMI group showed statistically significant declines in drug use at both the 6- and 12-month assessments. The intervention’s effect on lowering illicit drug use was greatest at the 6-month assessment but had weakened by the 1-year follow-up. The efficacy of the PMI was moderated by an individual’s initial drug use severity; individuals with greater drug use dependency at baseline were seen to have larger intervention effects, as did individuals who were most aware of their drug problem and willing to change their substance use behaviors. Unlike illicit drug use, changes in alcohol use did not differ significantly between the intervention and control groups, irrespective of an individuals’ recognition of the alcohol problem or willingness to take steps to address it.
A culturally competent, motivational intervention integrated into the care of vulnerable patients with facial injury can reduce illicit drug use behaviors. Subgroups of injured patients appear to benefit most from such personalized motivational interventions. A better articulation of target populations, intervention content, and delivery would allow for directed interventions and an appropriate focusing of limited time and health care resources.
With application of discrete-time survival mixture modeling, we examined 5,305 adolescents from the 1997 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth regarding the impact of parental monitoring during early adolescence (ages 14 to 16) on initiation of sexual intercourse and problem behavior engagement (ages 14 to 23). Four distinctive parental-monitoring groups were identified and labeled as “High,” “Increasing,” “Decreasing,” and “Low”. About 68% of adolescents received a high level of parental monitoring from ages 14 to 16 (High), 6% and 9% respectively exhibited an accelerated (Increasing) and a decelerated trajectory (Decreasing), and 17% had consistently low parental monitoring (Low). Relative to participants in the Low group, adolescents in the High group delayed sexual initiation by 1.5 years. Males, relative to females, were more likely to have had a low trajectory of parental monitoring, and were more likely to initiate sexual intercourse before age 14. In contrast to White Adolescents, Hispanics and Blacks were less likely to receive High parental monitoring, and had a higher rate of early sexual initiation before age 14. The study demonstrates the temporal relationship of parental monitoring with adolescent sexual initiation from a longitudinal perspective. An increase of parental monitoring across ages is accompanied with a decrease of sexual risk. The continual high level of parental monitoring from ages 14 to 16 also mitigated the risk of engagement in substance use and delinquent behaviors from ages 14 to 23.
discrete-time survival mixture model; sexual behavior; parental monitoring; alcohol/drug use; delinquency
Objective To test predictors of medication adherence in high-risk racial or ethnic minority youth living with HIV (YLH) using a conceptual model of social cognitive predictors including a continuous measure of motivational readiness. Methods Youth were participants in a multi-site clinical trial examining the efficacy of a motivational intervention. Racial-minority YLH (primarily African American) who were prescribed antiretroviral medication were included (N = 104). Data were collected using computer-assisted personal interviewing method via an Internet-based application and questionnaires. Results Using path analysis with bootstrapping, most youth reported suboptimal adherence, which predicted higher viral load. Higher motivational readiness predicted optimal adherence, and higher social support predicted readiness. Decisional balance was indirectly related to adherence. Conclusions The model provided a plausible framework for understanding adherence in this population. Culturally competent interventions focused on readiness and social support may be helpful for improving adherence in YLH.
Adherence; adolescents; HIV; minority populations; young adults