Associations between proximity and density of local alcohol outlets and alcohol use among Scottish adolescents

Health Place. 2013 Jan;19:124-30. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2012.10.004. Epub 2012 Nov 15.


Associations between different alcohol outcomes and outlet density measures vary between studies and may not be generalisable to adolescents. In a cross-sectional study of 979 15-year old Glaswegians, we investigated the association between alcohol outlet availability (outlet density and proximity), outlet type (on-premise vs. off-premise) and frequent (weekly) alcohol consumption. We adjusted for social background (gender, social class, family structure). Proximity and density of on-premise outlets were not associated with weekly drinking. However, adolescents living close (within 200 m) to an off-sales outlet were more likely to drink frequently (OR 1.97, p=0.004), as were adolescents living in areas with many nearby off-premises outlets (OR 1.60, p=0.016). Our findings suggest that certain alcohol behaviours (e.g. binge drinking) may be linked to the characteristics of alcohol outlets in the vicinity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior*
  • Alcohol Drinking*
  • Alcoholic Beverages / supply & distribution*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Family Characteristics*
  • Female
  • Geographic Information Systems
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Marketing / methods
  • Marketing / statistics & numerical data
  • Scotland
  • Sex Distribution
  • Social Class*