Learning Objective 1: Describe health disparities in terms of substance use among Hispanic men residing along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Learning Objective 2: Discuss predictors of substance use among Hispanic men residing along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Hispanic men in the United States experience disproportionate rates of substance use when compared to other ethnic groups. Previous research with the general population of Hispanic men has identified factors such as acculturation, depression, low self-esteem, sexual orientation, discrimination, and poverty that are related to substance use. Despite the body of research on substance use among Hispanic men, few studies to date have focused on Hispanic men residing along the U.S.-Mexico border. The U.S.-Mexico border area is a unique environment with a distinctive population at risk for a number of health disparities, including substance abuse. The purpose of this study was to determine predictors of substance use among Hispanic men residing along the U.S.-Mexico border.
A cross-sectional descriptive design was used to collect data from 100 community-dwelling Hispanic men (i.e., 50 Hispanic heterosexual men and 50 Hispanic men who have sex with men). Data were collected in a border city in the Southwestern U.S. in 2011-2012. Participants were recruited from community-based organizations that provide services to Hispanic men. Participants completed standardized measures of substance use, depression, self-esteem, sexual orientation, acculturation, and demographic characteristics.
Descriptive statistics, correlation coefficients, and regression analysis were used to analyze the data. The results of this study are not yet available since data analysis is in progress, but predictors of substance use have been identified.
As a population, Hispanic men continue to experience health disparities in terms of substance use. Because substance use and abuse render Hispanic men at risk for other health disparities, more research is needed to understand the predictors of substance use, and how these predictors can be used in future intervention studies.