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Exp Clin Psychopharmacol. 2016 Apr;24(2):110-9. doi: 10.1037/pha0000066. Epub 2016 Feb 22.

Stress-related increases in risk taking and attentional failures predict earlier relapse to smoking in young adults: A pilot investigation.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, Texas State University.
2
Department of Psychology, University of Rhode Island.
3
Department of Psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine.

Abstract

Substantial evidence links greater impulsivity and stress exposure to poorer smoking cessation outcomes. Results from adolescents also indicate that stress-related change in risk taking can impede cessation attempts. We investigated the effects of stress-related change in impulsivity, risk taking, attention and nicotine withdrawal, and craving in young adult smokers on time to smoking relapse in a relapse analogue paradigm. Twenty-six young adult smokers (50% women; mean age: 20.9 ± 1.8) were exposed to a stress imagery session followed by a contingency management-based relapse analogue paradigm. Participants smoked at least 5 cigarettes daily, with a mean baseline carbon monoxide (CO) level of 13.7 (± 5.1) ppm. Repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) and paired t tests examined stress induction validity and Cox regressions of proportional hazards examined the effects of stress-related changes in nicotine withdrawal, nicotine craving, attention, impulsivity, and risk taking on time to relapse. While stress-related change in impulsivity, nicotine craving and withdrawal did not predict time to relapse (all ps > .10), greater stress-related increases in reaction time (RT) variability (p = .02) were predictive of shorter time to relapse, with trend-level findings for inattention and risk taking. Furthermore, changes in stress-related risk taking affected outcome in women more than in men, with a significant relationship between stress-related change in risk taking only in women (p = .026). Smoking cessation attempts in young adults may be adversely impacted by stress-related increases in risk taking and attentional disruption. Clinicians working with young adults attempting cessation may need to target these stress-related impairments by fostering more adaptive coping and resilience.

PMID:
26901590
PMCID:
PMC4795968
DOI:
10.1037/pha0000066
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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