BACKGROUND: The aim of the study was to investigate possible associations between social background, other aspects of childhood environment and induced abortion among young women. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Norwegian girls (N = 2,198), comprising a representative sample, were followed up through three data collections from they were in their teens in 1992 till they were young adult women (20 - 27 years) seven years later. A questionnaire was used to collect the data and the analyses were conducted by Cox regression. The response rate for the first data collection was 97%. The cumulative response rate over all three data collections was 69 %. RESULTS: In young adulthood we uncovered a steady reduction of induced abortion rates with increasing educational level. Women who had grown up in Northern Norway had higher rates than other women. There was a lower risk for induced abortion when parents were well educated and had fairly good jobs. Further, there were associations to parental divorce, weak parental monitoring and parental alcohol abuse. INTERPRETATION: A host of socioeconomic factors are associated with abortion risk. We need more thorough knowledge about these factors. We can, however, conclude that preventive efforts in this area should be targeted towards groups with risk factors.
Comment In: Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2006 Jun 22;126(13):172716794660
AIM: Induced abortion is an experience shared by a large number of women in Norway, but we know little about the likely social or mental health-related implications of undergoing induced abortion. International studies suggest an increased risk of adverse outcomes such as depression, but many studies are weakened by poor design. One particular problem is the lack of control for confounding factors likely to increase the risk of both abortion and depression. The aim of the study was to investigate whether induced abortion was a risk factor for subsequent depression. METHODS: A representative sample of women from the normal population (n=768) was monitored between the ages of 15 and 27 years. Questions covered depression, induced abortion and childbirth, as well as sociodemographic variables, family relationships and a number of individual characteristics, such as schooling and occupational history and conduct problems. RESULTS: Young women who reported having had an abortion in their twenties were more likely to score above the cut-off point for depression (odds ratio (OR) 3.5; 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.0-6.1). Controlling for third variables reduced the association, but it remained significant (OR 2.9; 95% CI 1.7-5.6). There was no association between teenage abortion and subsequent depression. CONCLUSIONS: Young adult women who undergo induced abortion may be at increased risk for subsequent depression.
During the summer of 2004 the police closed Plata, an open drug scene in the midst of Oslo. The most important argument for the closure was that the drug scene made it easier for curious, city-dwelling adolescents to start using drugs. This research sought to assess this assumption. Ethnographic research methods including twenty 2-hr field observations and qualitative semi-structures interviews were employed. Interviews were conducted with 30 adolescents in the centre of Oslo, as well as with 10 former drug users, three police officers and three field workers. We were also given access to police statistics and authorised to do our own analysis of the material. The most important result was that adolescents seemed rather to avoid than to be attracted to this open drug scene in Oslo. Based on the presentation of qualitative data we suggest that this was due to the social definition of the drug scene. Because they experienced a great social distance between themselves and the regulars at the open drug scene, adolescents seemed to avoid Plata. Moreover, the scene was symbolically associated with heroin and injection as the route of administration, which had low prestige among the adolescents. Despite these findings, adolescents' recruitment to drug use was the key issue in the political debate following the closure. We point to the shared rhetorical interest among important institutional actors in framing the issue in this way. The argument was also embedded in widely shared public representations of adolescents and drug users as passive and irrational.
Aims To investigate the possible linkages between deliveries, abortions and subsequent nicotine dependence, alcohol problems and use of cannabis and other illegal drugs from the ages of 15-27 years. Methods Data were gathered as part of the Young in Norway Longitudinal Study, an 11-year follow-up of a representative sample of Norwegian adolescents and young adults. Design, setting and participants Information was obtained on (i) the history of childbirths and induced abortions for the participants between the ages of 15-27 years; (ii) measures of nicotine dependence, alcohol problems and use of cannabis and other illegal drugs; and (iii) socio-demographic, family and individual confounding factors. Results Those who had had an abortion had elevated rates of substance use and problems. Those who gave birth to a child had reduced rates of alcohol problems and cannabis use. These associations persisted after control for confounders. However, those women who still lived with the father of the aborted fetus were not at increased risk. Conclusions Abortion in women may, under some circumstances, be associated with increased risk of nicotine dependence, alcohol problems and use of cannabis and other illegal drugs. The birth of a child may reduce the use of some substances.
BACKGROUND: The prevalence of smoking is decreasing. At the same time, studies suggest that the relative proportion of nicotine dependent smokers is increasing. This may leave us with a smaller, but more problematic group of smokers. Few studies have investigated nicotine dependence in Norway. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Data were collected in the Young in Norway Longitudinal Study, where 2,890 respondents were followed up from their early teens until their late 20s. Information was collected on smoking habits, nicotine dependence, education, various indicators of social marginalization, anxiety, depression, suicidal behaviour, alcohol problems and use of drugs. RESULTS: At the age of 28 years, 12 % (n = 357) were classified as non-dependent daily smokers, whereas 5 % (n = 148) fulfilled criteria for "weak" and 3 % (n = 93) for "strong" nicotine dependence. 74 % of those who were in the "strong" dependent group at age 22 were still daily smokers at age 28; versus 50 % of non-dependent smokers. Nicotine dependence was associated with weak social resources, reduced mental health, alcohol problems and use of illegal drugs. INTERPRETATION: Daily smokers are more or less nicotine dependent. Smokers with a strong dependency have more stable smoking habits, weaker social resources and more problems with mental health, alcohol and drug use than others. Nicotine dependence represents a larger health political challenge for the authorities than previously recognised.
AIMS: To investigate prospectively the associations between daily smoking and nicotine dependence and anxiety, depression and suicide attempts. METHODS: Data were from the Young in Norway Longitudinal Study. A population-based sample (n = 1501) was followed for 13 years from ages 13-27 years. Data were gathered on smoking patterns and nicotine dependence; and depression, anxiety and parasuicide. Extensive information on socio-demographic factors, parental and family conditions, parental rearing practices, educational career, conduct problems, alcohol problems and use of illegal substances was also collected. RESULTS: Young adults who were nicotine-dependent had clearly elevated rates of anxiety, depression and parasuicide. These rates declined after controlling for a previous history of mental health problems and potential confounding factors. After adjustment, nicotine dependence was still associated with anxiety, depression and parasuicide. There was also a significant association with later depression in the group of non-dependent daily smokers. Measures of reduced mental health did not predict later smoking initiation or the development of nicotine dependence. CONCLUSIONS: Mental health was reduced more seriously in nicotine-dependent smokers than in non-dependent smokers. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that smoking, in particular nicotine dependence, influences mental health.
BACKGROUND: Even occasional use of cannabis may increase the risk of serious mental disease (e.g. schizophrenia). Little has been known about the use of cannabis in Norway; especially among adults. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A representative sample of young men and women were followed up from they were in their teens in 1992 until they were young adults in 2005. During this 13-year period they were asked four times (through a questionnaire) about use of cannabis, their education, job status, income, marital status, parenthood and parental education and social class. RESULTS: In the mid teens (15 - 16 years), less than 10 % had used cannabis. However, a rather high proportion had their debut in their late teens, as well as throughout their twenties. At the end of the twenties, 40 % of the men and 29 % of the women had used cannabis at some point, and 18 % of the men and 8 % of the women had used cannabis during the previous 12 months. Among the users, 70 % had used the substance 1 - 10 times the last 12 months, while 30 % had a more frequent pattern of use. During the teenage years, there were no associations with parental social class. However, during the twenties, the recruitment base of cannabis use increasingly became socially marginal men who lived aloe and had little education. INTERPRETATION: Use of cannabis is currently rather prevalent in groups of young adults in Norway, in particular among men. The future incidence of psychosis and schizophrenia may be affected by this.