JOURNAL ARTICLE

Everyday discrimination and mood and substance use disorders: a latent profile analysis with African Americans and Caribbean Blacks

Trenette T Clark, Christopher P Salas-Wright, Michael G Vaughn, Keith E Whitfield
Addictive Behaviors 2015, 40: 119-25
25254321

BACKGROUND: Perceived discrimination is a major source of health-related stress. The purpose of this study was to model the heterogeneity of everyday-discrimination experiences among African American and Caribbean Blacks and to identify differences in the prevalence of mood and substance use outcomes, including generalized anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, alcohol-use disorder, and illicit drug-use disorder among the identified subgroups.

METHOD: The study uses data from the National Survey of American Life obtained from a sample of African American and Caribbean Black respondents (N=4,462) between 18 and 65 years.

RESULTS: We used latent profile analysis and multinomial regression analyses to identify and validate latent subgroups and test hypotheses, yielding 4 classes of perceived everyday discrimination: Low Discrimination, Disrespect and Condescension, General Discrimination, and Chronic Discrimination. Findings show significant differences exist between the Low Discrimination and General Discrimination classes for major depressive disorder, alcohol-use disorder, and illicit drug-use disorder. Moreover, we find significant differences exist between the Low Discrimination and Chronic Discrimination classes for the four disorders examined. Compared with the Chronic Discrimination class, members of the other classes were significantly less likely to meet criteria for generalized anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, alcohol-use disorder, and illicit drug-use disorder.

CONCLUSIONS: Findings suggest elevated levels of discrimination increase risk for mood and substance-use disorders. Importantly, results suggest the prevalence of mood and substance-use disorders is a function of the type and frequency of discrimination that individuals experience.

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