The relationship between depressed affect, parental monitoring, and sex on cannabis use among American Indian youth

Am J Addict. 2023 Jul;32(4):402-409. doi: 10.1111/ajad.13416. Epub 2023 Apr 8.


Background and objectives: American Indian (AI) adolescents report higher rates of cannabis use than national US adolescents. Previous study examined interactive relationships between depressed affect and family factors on AI adolescent alcohol use. These factors have not been investigated for cannabis use. We examined whether parental monitoring dampened risk for cannabis use due to depressed affect, and potential moderation by sex.

Methods: We measured cannabis use, depressed affect, parental monitoring, and sex among reservation area AI youth among students in grades 7-12 attending 45 schools. We used censor-inflated regression models to identify parental monitoring as a moderator of the relationship between depressed affect and cannabis use.

Results: In the logistic portion of censor-inflated models, level of depressed affect and parental monitoring significantly related to last 30-day cannabis use. Higher levels of parental monitoring at lower levels of depressed affect related to lower likelihood of cannabis use. Female students had greater likelihood of endorsing cannabis use at higher levels of depressed affect. In the linear portion of the censor-inflated regression models, sex and level of parental monitoring significantly related to cannabis use frequency. Male students endorsed more frequent cannabis use while higher levels of parental monitoring related to lower frequency of use.

Discussion and conclusions: Parental monitoring may dampen the effect of depressed affect on cannabis use among AI youth on reservations.

Scientific significance: Future interventions should foster skill-building prevention efforts directed at coping with depression, along with parental training for effective monitoring. Special attention to AI female adolescents may be indicated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • American Indian or Alaska Native* / psychology
  • American Indian or Alaska Native* / statistics & numerical data
  • Cannabis*
  • Depression* / epidemiology
  • Depression* / ethnology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American* / psychology
  • Indians, North American* / statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Marijuana Use* / epidemiology
  • Marijuana Use* / ethnology
  • Marijuana Use* / psychology
  • Parenting* / ethnology
  • Parenting* / psychology
  • Parents
  • Schools
  • Sex Factors
  • United States / epidemiology