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Journal Article


Guillén AI, Marín C, Panadero S, Vázquez JJ. Addict. Behav. 2019; 103: e106246.


Universidad of Alcalá, Department of Social Psychology, Alcalá de Henares, Spain.


(Copyright © 2019, Elsevier Publishing)






The objectives of this study were: (1) to assess the prevalence of substance use among homeless women; (2) to examine the correlates for drug abuse; (3) to analyze paths between early stressful life events, drug abuse and mental health. The methodology was a longitudinal study of women homeless in Madrid (Spain), who were followed for a 24 months period. There were 138 participants interviewed at baseline and 73 participants interviewed at follow-up. We ran bivariate and multivariate analysis to examine the correlates for drug abuse. We also performed path analysis to test the interconnections between stressful life events, drug abuse and mental health.

RESULTS at baseline showed that 83.3% of participants had consumed at least one substance in the previous month. Tobacco was the most common substance consumed (70.1%), followed by sedatives (48.6%), alcohol (36.2%), methadone (13.7%), cocaine (7.2%), cannabis (6.5%) and heroin (5.1%). In addition, women who met criteria for drug abuse (19.6% of the sample) were more likely to be younger, have suffered adverse experiences during childhood, have engaged in prostitution, and have ever attempted suicide, in comparison with women who did not meet criteria for drug abuse. Path analysis supported that early stressful life events increased the vulnerability for subsequent negative outcomes among homeless women. These findings have significant implications for understanding how to implement programs for homeless women in Spain.

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Language: en


Drug abuse; Homeless women; Mental health; Stressful life events; Substance use


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