Evidently Advent Day 22: best health evidence wrapped up for the festive season!

Drunk at Christmas?

Alcohol Bottles

Can family-based universal programmes help prevent alcohol misuse in young people? These programmes typically support the development of parenting skills and may also include other elements such as work on social and peer resistance skills.

A Cochrane review includes evidence from 12 randomised controlled trials on the effectiveness of these programmes. The results from the studies could not be combined. Most reported positive effects. Two large studies reported no effects.

The reviewers concluded that the effects of family-based prevention programmes are small but generally consistent and also last into the medium- to longer-term, but call for more and better research.

Illustration by Robbie Dawson. For his other advent illustration, visit day 4.

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Foxcroft DR, Tsertsvadze A. Universal family-based prevention programs for alcohol misuse in young people. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2011, Issue 9. Art. No.: CD009308. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD009308 – See more at: http://summaries.cochrane.org/CD009308/ADDICTN_family-based-alcohol-misuse-prevention-for-young-people-can-be-effective#sthash.5MQF69CS.dpuf

Sarah Chapman

About Sarah Chapman

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Sarah's work as a Knowledge Broker at Cochrane UK focuses on disseminating Cochrane evidence through social media, including Evidently Cochrane blogs, blogshots and the ‘Evidence for Everyday’ series for nurses, midwives, allied health professionals and patients. A former registered general nurse, Sarah has a particular interest making evidence accessible and useful to practitioners and to others making decisions about health. Before joining Cochrane, Sarah also worked on systematic reviews for the University of Oxford and the Royal College of Nursing Institute, and obtained degrees in History from the University of Oxford and in the history of women’s health and illness in early modern England (MPhil., University of Reading).

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