Causes of risky sex in young females analysed

This study adds to evidence that substance use may lead to other risky behaviours such as casual sex. American researcher surveyed 483 incoming first-year college females several times over eight months and found that about 25% of them had at least one casual encounter during their first year of college. Whilst the strongest indicator that they would engage in casual relationships were pre-college 'hook ups', alcohol and marijuana use also increased this risk. Other factors included personality, behavioural intentions, situational triggers, family background, impulsivity and sensation-seeking. Interestingly, the authors found that race, socio-economic status, academics, cigarette smoking and 'parental connectedness' were not predictive indicators of sexual 'hook ups'. The study highlights the importance of prevention via health promotion and disease prevention programmes.