Acculturation and Alcohol Treatment In Ethnic Minority Populations

Published: 2021-09-11 21:50:09
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Category: Population, Ordinary People, Alcohol, Ethnic

Type of paper: Essay

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In the article Acculturation and Alcohol Treatment in Ethnic Minority Populations: Assessment Issues and Implications, the authors research the impact of acculturation on the drinking behavior of minorities, specifically older Latino veterans versus older White veterans. In the article, acculturation is defined as “ the exchange of cultural features from the continuous firsthand contact of one group to another. ” The authors conducted a study that looked at the relationship between the level of acculturation and the level of alcohol use among older White and Latino male veterans.
The subjects were 55yrs of age or older there were 18 White male veterans and 24 Latino male veterans. The authors hypothesized that the higher the levels of acculturation among Latino veterans would correlate to higher levels of drinking behavior. The hypothesis was backed up with the results; drinking behavior was correlated with acculturation levels. In Latino veterans higher past drinking behavior was associated with lower social affiliation with their own group. The concept of acculturation is something that is new to me.
I can imagine though that it could have a profound impact on the lives of minority individuals. In reading the article, it was linked to higher levels of substance abuse in minorities as well as stress and psychological disorders; which in many minorities go undetected and/or untreated. This is a concept that I feel should be studied more. This article deals with older subjects, but I think the impact of acculturation needs to be studied in younger minorities, males and females.

I hope to have the opportunity to look into the concept, theories, and potential impacts of acculturation more thoroughly as I continue my tenure here at USC. This article stresses, just as much of the material I have read in this class and my other classes, that as mental health workers and social workers we must mind our clients cultures and the impact of their culture on their behavior. With the idea of acculturation now added, as a social worker I need be mindful of the potential set backs minority clients may be experiencing by trying to fit in to the mainstream culture.

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