Functioning of Concerned Others When Adults Enter Treatment for an Alcohol Use Disorder

Christine Timko, Kathleen M. Grant, Michael A. Cucciare

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Poor functioning among Concerned Others (COs; family and friends of an individual with an alcohol or other substance use disorder) is a significant public health problem. The purpose of this study was to inform interventions for COs by examining potential correlates of 3 aspects of functioning: quality of life, mental health, and knowledge of how to handle problems related to their drinker. Methods: This study collected data from 277 COs when their friend or family member (their “drinker”) was entering treatment for an alcohol use disorder. Potential correlates were the drinker's substance use severity, the CO–drinker relationship and communication, and COs’ coping and perceived stigma related to involvement with their drinker. Results: In a summary analysis, only stressors in the CO–drinker relationship (the drinker's criticism, disagreement, anger, and demands) were consistently associated with poorer functioning as indicated by COs’ poorer quality of life and mental health. In contrast, only COs’ use of approach coping was associated with COs’ knowing how to handle problems related to the drinker. Conclusions: Because reducing both relationship stressors and the link between stressors and poor functioning can be achieved through CO and drinker education and intervention, these findings inform how to effectively support COs’ goals for better functioning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1986-1993
Number of pages8
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume43
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019

Fingerprint

Mental Health
Alcohols
Quality of Life
Health
Anger
Public health
Carbon Monoxide
Medical problems
Substance-Related Disorders
Public Health
Education
Communication
Therapeutics

Keywords

  • Alcohol
  • Concerned Other
  • Functioning
  • Intervention
  • Stressors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

Functioning of Concerned Others When Adults Enter Treatment for an Alcohol Use Disorder. / Timko, Christine; Grant, Kathleen M.; Cucciare, Michael A.

In: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, Vol. 43, No. 9, 01.09.2019, p. 1986-1993.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Timko, Christine ; Grant, Kathleen M. ; Cucciare, Michael A. / Functioning of Concerned Others When Adults Enter Treatment for an Alcohol Use Disorder. In: Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research. 2019 ; Vol. 43, No. 9. pp. 1986-1993.
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