Although previous studies have examined the buffering effects of social support and coping style on the relationship between stress and alcohol consumption, they have typically relied on analysis of variance (ANOVA) or regression analysis. In addition, few studies have examined the potential stress-buffering effects of drinking with coworkers after work on the relationship between job stress and job dissatisfaction. In the present study, using a signal detection analysis, we evaluated the interactions of drinking with coworkers after work and work-stressor variables among Japanese white-collar workers (n = 397) in 1997. The analysis was performed for two groups of subjects divided based on their status in the company. This was necessary because in Japan the obligations to drink socially increase with one's rising status in the company. In both the 'staff members and lower- level managers' and 'middle-level and higher-level managers' groups, an interaction between work-stressor variables and drinking variables was observed. The findings imply that drinking with coworkers after work ameliorated the sense of job dissatisfaction, but only among those subjects who already had lower levels of work stressors. For subjects with high levels of work stressors, attitudes toward drinking with coworkers were unrelated to job satisfaction levels.
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