A Systematic Review on the Effects of PTSD Associated Alcohol Abuse on Social Economic Status among Youth in Kenya


David Mutisya
Joseph Theuri


Alcohol Abuse, PTSD, Socio-Economic Status, Youth in Kenya


The issue of alcohol abuse in Kenya is deeply rooted and continues to affect the well-being of youthful population. A study conducted in 2018, an estimated 45-50% alcohol-abusing youth in Kiambu County had post-traumatic stress disorder. The main purpose of this paper is to review and synthesize existing literature articles on the effects of PTSD associated Alcohol Abuse in Kenya’s context. The review shows that PSTD related to alcohol abuse, though not well studied in Kenya is a real challenge facing the youth. It affects their learning processes and their transition to colleges and other institutions of higher learning. Alcohol abuse also affects employment prospects for the youth and leads to impoverishment. It also challenges the productivity and entrepreneurial capacities of these youth; leading to further impoverishment and reduced socioeconomic prospects. On the basis of these findings, it is pertinent to come up with psychosocial support mechanisms for alcohol abusers suffering from PSTD. The government should put in place funding strategies for the rehabilitation of youth suffering from PSTD. Also, government empowerment programmes in Kenya should ensure that the youth with PSTD related alcohol abuse can access funding to enhance their socioeconomic status.

Abstract 304 | PDF Downloads 92


Adere A, Yimer, N.B, Kumsa H., & Liben M.L. (2017). Determinants of psychoactive substances use among Woldia University students in North-Eastern Ethiopia. BMC Res Notes, 10, 441. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13104-017-2763-x.

Arbona, C., & Schwartz, J.P. (2016). Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptom Clusters, Depression, Alcohol Abuse, and General Stress among Hispanic Male Fire-fighters. Hispanic Journal of Behavioural Sciences, 38, (4), 507-522.

Breet, E., Seedat, S., & Kagee, A. (2016). Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Depression in Men and Women Who Perpetrate Intimate Partner Violence. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 34 (10), 2181-2198.

Brown, N., Wojtalik, J.A., & Turkel, M. et al (2016). Neuroticism and Its Associated Brain Activation in Women with PTSD. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 35 (1-2), 341-363.

Brown, W.J., Bruce, S.E., & Buchholz, K.R. et al. (2014). Affective Dispositions and PTSD Symptom Clusters in Female Interpersonal Trauma Survivors. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 31(3), 407-424.

Chege, R, Mungai, P. & Oresin S. (2017). An Investigation of the Factors Contributing to Drug and Substance Abuse among the Youth in Kenya: A Survey of Select Rehabilitation Centres in Mombasa County. International Journal of Public Health, 1, 1

Daw, J., Margolis, R., & Wright, L. (2017). Emerging Adulthood, Emergent Health Lifestyles: Sociodemographic Determinants of Trajectories of Smoking, Binge Drinking, Obesity, and Sedentary Behaviour. Journal of Health and Social Behaviour, 58(2), 181-197. Retrieved March 14, 2020, from www.jstor.org/stable/44504733

Emery, C.R, Wu, S., Yang H., et al (May 8, 2016). Informal Control by Family and Risk Markers for Alcohol Abuse/Dependence in Seoul. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 34, 5. pp. 1000-1020.

Ferrajão, P.C. & Oliveira, R.A. (2015). Portuguese War Veterans: Moral Injury and Factors Related to Recovery from PTSD. Qualitative Health Research, 26 (2), 204-214.

Hollingsworth, D.W., Gauthier J.M., McGuire A.P et al. (2018). Intolerance of Uncertainty Mediates Symptoms of PTSD and Depression in African American Veterans with Comorbid PTSD and Substance Use Disorders. Journal of Black Psychology, 44 (7), 667-688.

Jenkins, R., Othieno, C., Omollo, R. et al. (2015). Probable Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in Kenya and Its Associated Risk Factors: A Cross-Sectional Household Survey. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health ISSN 1660-4601 www.mdpi.com/journal/ijerph. 12, 13494-13509; DOI:10.3390/ijerph121013494

Kaminer, D., Eagle, G. & Crawford-Browne, S. (2016). Continuous traumatic stress as a mental and physical health challenge: Case studies from South Africa. Journal of Health Psychology, 23(8): pp. 1038-1049.

Karsberg, S., & Elklit, A. (2015). Victimization and PTSD in A rural Kenyan youth sample. Clinical Practice and Epidemiology in Mental Health. 8(1):91-101

Khoury, L., Tang, Y.L., Bradley, B., Cubells, J.F., & Ressler, K.J. (2010). Substance use, childhood traumatic experience, and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder in an urban civilian population. Depression and Anxiety, 27(12), 1077-1086.

Kiambi, M.J. (2018). Factors Influencing Drugs and Substance Abuse among Public Secondary School Students in Kiambu County, Kenya. International Journal of Psychology. v. 3, n. 1, p. 1 - 23.

Kinyua D.G, Nyamai J.J., Nyaberi J.M & Wanyoike P.K. (2019). Socio-economic Factors Influencing Alcohol and Substance Abuse among College Students in Murang'a County, Kenya. International Journals of Academics & Research ISSN: 2617-4391, IJARKE Science & Technology Journal. Vol. 1, Issue 4, 8-18.

Magidson J.F, Dietrich J, Otwombe K.N. et al (2016). Psychosocial correlates of alcohol and other substance use among low-income adolescents in peri-urban Johannesburg, South Africa: A focus on gender differences. Journal of Health Psychology. vol. 22, 11: pp. 1415-1425.

Maniglio R. (2016). Bullying and Other Forms of Peer Victimization in Adolescence and Alcohol Use. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, 18 (4), 457-473.

Mbwayo, A.W., Mathai, M., Harder, V.S. et al. (2020). Trauma among Kenyan School Children in Urban and Rural Settings: PTSD Prevalence and Correlates. Journ Child Adol Trauma, 13,63-73 https://doi.org/10.1007/s40653-019-00256-2

Mwangi C. (2018). Media Influence on Public Policy in Kenya: The Case of Illicit Brew Consumption. SAGE Open, 8 (2), 88-109.

Mwangi, J.W. (2019). Nature and causes of conflicts existing between and among women and Men Living in Informal Settlement Areas. A case of Kiandutu Informal Settlement in Kiambu County, Kenya. International Journal of Academic Research in Business, Arts and Science (IJARBAS.COM), 1 (4), 1- 14.

Nöthling, J., Suliman, S., Martin L., et al (2016). Differences in Abuse, Neglect, and Exposure to Community Violence in Adolescents with and Without PTSD and Depression. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 34 (21-22), 4357-4383.

Petruzzi L.J, Pullen S.J, Lange B.C.L. et al. (2018). Contributing Risk Factors for Substance Use among Youth in Post-conflict Liberia. Qualitative Health Research, 28 (12), 1827-1838.

Pollard, M.W. & McKinney, C. (2016). Parental Physical Force and Alcohol Use in Emerging Adults: Mediation by Psychological Problems. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 34 (10), 2087-2109.

Riber, K. (2017). Trauma complexity and child abuse: A qualitative study of attachment narratives in adult refugees with PTSD. Transcultural Psychiatry, 54 (5-6), 840-869.

Ruglass, L.M., Espinosa A, Sykes M. et al (2016). Direct and Indirect Effects of Cumulative Trauma, PTSD, and Substance Use Disorder on Probability of Arrest Among Lower-Income African American and Latina Women. Race and Justice, 8 (2), 126-153.

Russell, C.A., Hamby, A.M., Grube, J.W., & Russell, D.W. (2019). When Do Public Health Epilogues Correct the Influence of Alcohol Story Lines on Youth? The Interplay of Narrative Transportation and Persuasion Knowledge. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 38 (3), 316-331.

Schwartz, B., Kaminer, D., & Hardy A., et al (2019). Gender Differences in the Violence Exposure Types That Predict PTSD and Depression in Adolescents. Journal of Interpersonal Violence. 37. 10.1016/j.chiabu.2012.12.011.

Smith, B.N., Taverna, A.B., & Fox, A.B.et al (2017). The Role of PTSD, Depression, and Alcohol Misuse Symptom Severity in Linking Deployment Stressor Exposure and Post-Military Work and Family Outcomes in Male and Female Veterans. Clinical Psychological Science, 5 (4), 664-682.

Stokols, D. (1996). Translating Social Ecological Theory into Guidelines for Community Health Promotion. American journal of health promotion, 10 (4), 282-98.

Watson-Singleton N.N., Florez I.A., Clunnie et al. (2019). Psychosocial Mediators between Intimate Partner Violence and Alcohol Abuse in Low-Income African American Women. Violence against Women. 1077801219850331. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1177/1077801219850331

Yassin, N., Afifi R., &Singh, N., et al (2018). "There Is Zero Regulation on the Selling of Alcohol": The Voice of the Youth on the Context and Determinants of Alcohol Drinking in Lebanon. Qualitative Health Research, 28 (5), 733-744.