Teens exposed to drug use, mental distress, violence at risk for HIV in adulthood

December 21, 2017, University of Michigan

The psychological and social risks that adolescents experience can have a lasting impact on adulthood.

When those risks include drug use, mental distress and exposure to violence, they may engage in unsafe sexual behavior that increases their chance of HIV infection, according to a new longitudinal study by the University of Michigan.

"Our findings support the notion that the increasing frequency of experienced during adolescence may have effects on HIV risk behaviors decades later," said study lead author David Cordova, U-M assistant professor of .

Cordova and colleagues conducted the study from September 1994 to May 2013 in Flint, Mich. The participants involved 850 students, mainly African-American, who were asked about their sexual behaviors, mental health, being a victim or witness of violence, and social conditions (family, peer and community factors) beginning at age 14. They were assessed six times during the study until age 32.

One out of four respondents who had a relatively higher frequency of co-occurring psychological and social risk as adolescents were more likely to report unprotected sex with recent partners, as well as sexual intercourse with someone they just met in adulthood.

In addition, they were more likely to use illegal drugs prior to sex, and had at least four sexual partners. This segment was more vulnerable to HIV risk than those who were part of the low frequency of risk group, which had fewer instances of drug use, violence and during adolescence.

Since the study mainly involved African-American respondents, the findings may not be generalized to all adolescent populations, Cordova said.

The findings appear in the journal AIDS.

Explore further: Teens' painkiller misuse linked to dating violence

Related Stories

Teens' painkiller misuse linked to dating violence

November 20, 2017
(HealthDay)—Teens who abuse prescription drugs, like opioid painkillers, are prone to initiating or being victims of dating violence, a new study finds.

New study examines sexual violence against college women with disabilities

May 15, 2017
Patterns of sexual violence and intimate partner violence aimed at female college students with a mental health-related or behavioral disability and the health effects of this abuse are presented in a new study published ...

Study finds higher rates of sexual violence among bisexual women

November 15, 2017
While sexual harassment and sexual violence have been pervasive problems for women over the course of history, a recent study has uncovered that bisexual women specifically experience sexual violence more often than straight ...

Women with multiple violent partners more likely to have endured childhood trauma, psychological abuse

November 15, 2016
While there is abundant research on violently abusive relationships, it does not delve into the background of each individual involved, according to University of Michigan researchers.

Parent-teen involvement deters Hispanic youth from substance use, risky sexual behaviors

January 17, 2014
Without parental guidance, Hispanic youths are at increased risk of contracting HIV because they are more likely to engage in substance abuse and risky sex behaviors, a new University of Michigan study found.

Teen stalking victims: Analysis of consequences reveals disturbing trends

November 16, 2016
Stalking is a widely recognized public health concern, yet little information is available about stalking behaviors among teenage victims. The teen years are a formative period during which boundaries are tested and guidelines ...

Recommended for you

Study shows how HIV is shielded from immune attack

July 10, 2018
Scientists from UNSW Sydney and the UK have discovered that the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) hijacks a small molecule from the host cell to protect itself from being destroyed by the host's immune system.

Out-of-pocket costs put HIV prevention drug out of reach for many at risk

July 4, 2018
Public health officials are expanding efforts to get the HIV prevention pill into the hands of those at risk, in a nationwide effort to curb infections. But the officials are hitting roadblocks—the drug's price tag, which ...

New simulation tool predicts how well HIV-prophylaxis will work

June 14, 2018
A new mathematical simulation approach predicts the efficacy of pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) medications, which help prevent HIV infection. The framework, presented in PLOS Computational Biology by Sulav Duwal ...

Many at risk for HIV despite lifesaving pill

June 11, 2018
Multiple barriers may stop high-risk individuals from accessing an HIV drug that can reduce the subsequent risk of infection, according to a new University of Michigan study.

Active HIV in large white blood cells may drive cognitive impairment in infected mice

June 7, 2018
Macrophages, large white blood cells that engulf and destroy potential pathogens, harbor active viral reserves that appear to play a key role in impaired learning and memory in mice infected with a rodent version of HIV. ...

HIV vaccine elicits antibodies in animals that neutralize dozens of HIV strains

June 4, 2018
An experimental vaccine regimen based on the structure of a vulnerable site on HIV elicited antibodies in mice, guinea pigs and monkeys that neutralize dozens of HIV strains from around the world. The findings were reported ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.