Changes and influences on adolescent drinking in New Zealand

17 Jun 2020

In this report, longitudinal survey data from New Zealand were used to track drinking patterns among adolescents (16 to 17-year-olds) and the wider population (16 to 65-year-olds) from 2011 to 2015. By the time they were 20 to 21-years-old, adolescents had decreased the quantity of alcohol they drank on a typical occasion compared to when they were 16 to 17-years-old (but still drank at a high risk level). The decrease was largely driven by a decline in drinking among heavier drinkers. While certain measures (eg, tobacco smoking and cannabis use) were associated with heavier drinking, change over time in these measures did not explain the decrease in adolescent drinking.