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APA Journal: Psychology of Addictive Behaviors

Sustain talk predicts poorer outcomes among mandated college student drinkers receiving a brief motivational intervention.Open in a New Window

Within-session client language that represents a movement toward behavior change (change talk) has been linked to better treatment outcomes in the literature on motivational interviewing (MI). There has been somewhat less study of the impact of client language against change (sustain talk) on outcomes following an MI session. This study examined the role of both client change talk and sustain talk, as well as therapist language, occurring during a brief motivational intervention (BMI) session with college students who had violated college alcohol policy (N = 92). Audiotapes of these sessions were coded using a therapy process coding system. A series of hierarchical regressions were used to examine the relationships among therapist MI-consistent and MI-inconsistent language, client change talk and sustain talk, as well as global measures of relational variables, and drinking outcomes. Contrary to prior research, sustain talk, but not change talk, predicted poorer alcohol use outcomes following the BMI at 3- and 12-month follow-up assessments. Higher levels of client self-exploration during the session also predicted improved drinking outcomes. Therapist measures of MI-consistent and MI-inconsistent language, and global measures of therapist acceptance and MI spirit were unrelated to client drinking outcomes. Results suggest that client sustain talk and self-exploration during the session play an important role in determining drinking outcomes among mandated college students receiving a BMI addressing alcohol use. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Development and evaluation of a mobile intervention for heavy drinking and smoking among college students.Open in a New Window

Nearly all college student smokers also drink alcohol, and smoking and heavy episodic drinking (HED) commonly co-occur. However, few studies have examined the factors that concurrently influence smoking and HED among college students and, to date, no interventions have been developed that target both HED and smoking in this population. The objective of the current study was to develop and evaluate a mobile feedback intervention that targets HED and smoking. Participants (N = 94) were non-treatment-seeking college students (Mage = 20.5 years, SD = 1.7) who engaged in at least a single HED episode in the past 2 weeks and reported concurrent smoking and drinking at least once a week. Participants were randomized to receive either the mobile intervention for 14 days, complete mobile assessments (without intervention) for 14 days, or complete minimal assessments (without intervention or mobile assessments). At a 1-month follow-up, compared with the minimal assessment condition, we observed significant reductions in the number of cigarettes per smoking day in both the mobile intervention (d = 0.55) and mobile assessment (d = 0.45) conditions. Among those randomized to the mobile intervention, receiving more modules of the intervention was significantly associated with a lower likelihood of any drinking during the 14-day assessment period and significant reductions in smoking at 1-month follow-up. The mobile intervention did not result in significant reductions in HED or concurrent smoking and drinking. Future research should continue to examine ways of using technology and the real-time environment to improve interventions for HED and smoking. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Differential association of drinking motives with alcohol use on weekdays and weekends.Open in a New Window

Drinking motives (DM) reflect the reasons why individuals drink alcohol. Weekdays are mainly dedicated to work, whereas weekends are generally associated with spending time with friends during special events or leisure activities; using alcohol on weekdays and weekends may also be related to different DM. This study examined whether DM were differentially associated with drinking volume (DV) on weekdays and weekends. A representative sample of 5,391 young Swiss men completed a questionnaire assessing weekday and weekend DV, as well as their DM, namely, enhancement, social, coping, and conformity motives. Associations of DM with weekday and weekend DV were examined using structural equation models. Each DM was tested individually in a separate model; all associations were positive and generally stronger (except conformity) for weekend rather than for weekday DV. Further specific patterns of association were found when DM were entered into a single model simultaneously. Associations with weekday and with weekend DV were positive for enhancement and coping motives. However, associations were stronger with weekend rather than with weekday DV for enhancement, and stronger with weekday than with weekend DV for coping motives. Associations of social motives were not significant with weekend DV and negative with weekday DV. Conformity motives were negatively associated with weekend DV and positively related to weekday DV. These results suggest that interventions targeting enhancement motives should be particularly effective at decreasing weekend drinking, whereas interventions targeted at coping motives would be particularly effective at reducing alcohol use on weekdays. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Growth trajectories of alcohol information processing and associations with escalation of drinking in early adolescence.Open in a New Window

This longitudinal study provided a comprehensive examination of age-related changes in alcohol outcome expectancies, subjective evaluation of alcohol outcomes, and automatic alcohol associations in early adolescence. A community sample (52% female, 75% White/non-Hispanic) was assessed annually for 3 years (mean age at the first assessment = 11.6 years). Results from growth modeling suggested that perceived likelihood of positive outcomes increased and that subjective evaluations of these outcomes were more positive with age. Perceived likelihood of negative outcomes declined with age. Automatic alcohol associations were assessed with an Implicit Association Task (IAT), and were predominantly negative, but these negative associations weakened with age. High initial levels of perceived likelihood of positive outcomes at age 11 were associated with escalation of drinking. Perceived likelihood of negative outcomes was associated with low risk for drinking at age 11, but not with changes in drinking. Increases in positive evaluations of positive outcomes were associated with increases in alcohol use. Overall, findings suggest that at age 11, youth maintain largely negative attitudes and perceptions about alcohol, but with the transition into adolescence, there is a shift toward a more neutral or ambivalent view of alcohol. Some features of this shift are associated with escalation of drinking. Our findings point to the importance of delineating multiple aspects of alcohol information processing for extending cognitive models of alcohol use to the early stages of drinking. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Drinking to cope among African American college students: An assessment of episode-specific motives.Open in a New Window

Despite evidence that African Americans are disproportionately affected by drinking to cope relative to European Americans, African American college students’ drinking motives remain understudied. Additionally, most research has only examined between-person differences in drinking to cope as a predictor of alcohol use, ignoring within-person variability. In the current daily diary study of 462 African American undergraduates from a historically Black university, associations between episode-specific drinking to cope motives and alcohol use were tested, an approach more consistent with motivational theories of drinking. At baseline, students completed traditional global drinking motive measures; then for 30 days they reported the number of standard drinks they consumed the previous night, and, if they drank, their coping, enhancement, and social reasons for doing so. Students who reported higher mean levels of episode-specific coping motives, on average, consumed more alcohol on drinking evenings. Furthermore, mean episode-specific coping motives, but not global coping motives, predicted average levels of alcohol use. Additionally, coping motives were particularly important for predicting nonsocial (vs. social) drinking. Finally, during evenings for which students reported higher than usual episode-specific coping motives, men consumed more alcohol in both social and nonsocial contexts; in contrast, women reporting higher than usual drinking-to-cope motives only consumed more nonsocial drinks. In conclusion, drinking among African American college students was related to coping motives, particularly among men and in the context of nonsocial alcohol consumption. Moreover, motivational theories of alcohol use may be refined by measuring episode-specific drinking motives that more accurately capture the drinking-to-cope process. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Not just fun and games: A review of college drinking games research from 2004 to 2013.Open in a New Window

Drinking games are a high-risk social drinking activity consisting of rules and guidelines that determine when and how much to drink (Polizzotto et al., 2007). Borsari’s (2004) seminal review paper on drinking games in the college environment succinctly captured the published literature as of February 2004. However, research on college drinking games has grown exponentially during the last decade, necessitating an updated review of the literature. This review provides an in-depth summary and synthesis of current drinking games research (e.g., characteristics of drinking games, and behavioral, demographic, social, and psychological influences on participation) and suggests several promising areas for future drinking games research. This review is intended to foster a better understanding of drinking game behaviors among college students and improve efforts to reduce the negative impact of this practice on college campuses. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Changes in drinking patterns in the first years after onset: A latent transition analysis of National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) data.Open in a New Window

This study examined adult drinking patterns in the first year after onset and whether these patterns changed after 3 years. We also investigated whether specific demographic characteristics or DSM–IV alcohol use disorder symptoms were related to drinking transitions. Data from National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC) were analyzed. “Newly onset alcohol users” (NOAUs; n = 854) were adults who initiated drinking in the year prior to Wave 1 (2001–2002) and who were followed-up at Wave 2 (2004–2005). Latent class models were estimated for 10 frequency-type drinking patterns at both waves. Latent transition analysis explored changes in drinking patterns from baseline to follow-up. Three drinker classes emerged at Wave 1: (a) low risk (41%); (b) sporadic hazardous (35%); and (c) regular hazardous (24%). One in 5 (18%) NOAUs stopped drinking by Wave 2 and were assigned to an “abstainer” class. The transition probability into the “abstainer” class was highest for the Wave 1 low risk drinkers (86%). The remaining NOAUs (82%) continued to drink at Wave 2. Of these, 70% of regular hazardous drinkers at Wave 1 maintained this drinking pattern at Wave 2, with approximately 30% reducing their pattern of drinking. One third of sporadic hazardous drinkers at Wave 1 remained at this level of drinking at Wave 2; the remainder escalated the drinking. Tolerance, larger/longer, cut down/quit and withdrawal were common among regular hazardous drinkers. Adult drinkers who engage in a low frequency and quantity drinking pattern are most likely to stop drinking soon after onset. Drinking patterns adopted in the first year after onset were indicative of drinking involvement 3 years later. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Social anxiety symptoms and drinking behaviors among college students: The mediating effects of drinking motives.Open in a New Window

The impact of social anxiety on negative alcohol-related behaviors among college students has been studied extensively. Drinking motives are considered the most proximal indicator of college student drinking behavior. The current study examined the mediating role of drinking motives in the relationship that social anxiety symptoms have with problematic (alcohol consumption, harmful drinking, and negative consequences) and safe (protective behavioral strategies) drinking behaviors. Participants were 532 undergraduates who completed measures of social anxiety, drinking motives, alcohol use, harmful drinking patterns, negative consequences of alcohol use, and protective behavioral strategy use. Our results show that students with higher levels of social anxiety symptoms who were drinking for enhancement motives reported more harmful drinking and negative consequences, and used fewer protective behavioral strategies. Thus, students who were drinking to increase their positive mood were participating in more problematic drinking patterns compared with students reporting fewer social anxiety symptoms. Further, conformity motives partially mediated the relationship between social anxiety symptoms and negative consequences. Thus, students with more symptoms of social anxiety who were drinking in order to be accepted by their peers were more likely than others to experience negative consequences. Clinical and research implications are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Gender roles and binge drinking among Latino emerging adults: A latent class regression analysis.Open in a New Window

Gender roles are often cited as a culturally specific predictor of drinking among Latino populations. This study used latent class regression to test the relationships between gender roles and binge drinking in a sample of Latino emerging adults. Participants were Latino emerging adults who participated in Wave III of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (N = 2,442). A subsample of these participants (n = 660) completed the Bem Sex Role Inventory—Short. We conducted latent class regression using 3 dimensions of gender roles (femininity, social masculinity, and personal masculinity) to predict binge drinking. Results indicated a 3-class solution. In Class 1, the protective personal masculinity class, personal masculinity (e.g., being a leader, defending one’s own beliefs) was associated with a reduction in the odds of binge drinking. In Class 2, the nonsignificant class, gender roles were not related to binge drinking. In Class 3, the mixed masculinity class, personal masculinity was associated with a reduction in the odds of binge drinking, whereas social masculinity (e.g., forceful, dominant) was associated with an increase in the odds of binge drinking. Post hoc analyses found that females, those born outside the United States, and those with greater English language usage were at greater odds of being in Class 1 (vs. Class 2). Males, those born outside the United States, and those with greater Spanish language usage were at greater odds of being in Class 3 (vs. Class 2). Directions for future research and implications for practice with Latino emerging adults are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Advantages and disadvantages of college drinking in students’ own words: Content analysis of the decisional balance worksheet.Open in a New Window

The decisional balance worksheet (DBW), an open-ended measure of motivation to change, may be used to record the perceived advantages and disadvantages of substance use as well as alternative behaviors. Recent findings have indicated that the open-ended DBW can be quantified to validly reflect college students’ level of motivation to reduce their drinking (Collins, Carey, & Otto, 2009). The goal of the current study was to enhance our understanding of college students’ perceived advantages and disadvantages of drinking by qualitatively examining the content of their decisional balance. Participants were undergraduate college students at a 4-year university (N = 760) who participated in a randomized controlled trial of online brief motivational interventions. Using the DBW, participants recorded the advantages and disadvantages of their current drinking. Conventional content analysis methods were used to extract common themes. Social, enjoyment, and psychological reasons were the most commonly mentioned advantages of drinking, whereas physical side effects, expense and interference with goals were the most commonly mentioned disadvantages of drinking. These findings show that college students primarily use alcohol for enjoyment, particularly in social situations, as well as for coping with stress and social anxiety. On the other hand, many college students report having physical side effects from drinking as well as other kinds of concerns (e.g., expense, calories). Findings suggest that using the open-ended DBW may result in a more client-centered and accurate representation of what college students perceive as advantages and disadvantages to drinking than established, Likert-scale measures of decisional balance. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Couples’ marijuana use is inversely related to their intimate partner violence over the first 9 years of marriage.Open in a New Window

Research on the association between marijuana use and intimate partner violence (IPV) has generated inconsistent findings, and has been primarily based on cross-sectional data. We examined whether husbands’ and wives’ marijuana use predicted both husbands’ and wives’ IPV perpetration over the first 9 years of marriage (Wave 1, n = 634 couples). We also examined moderation by antisocial behavior, the spouse’s marijuana use, and whether IPV was reported during the year before marriage. These predictive associations were calculated using a time-lagged multivariate generalized multilevel model, simultaneously estimating predictors of husband and wife IPV. In fully adjusted models, we found that more frequent marijuana use by husbands and wives predicted less frequent IPV perpetration by husbands. Husbands’ marijuana use also predicted less frequent IPV perpetration by wives. Moderation analyses demonstrated that couples in which both spouses used marijuana frequently reported the least frequent IPV perpetration. There was a significant positive association between wives’ marijuana use and wives’ IPV perpetration, but only among wives who had already reported IPV perpetration during the year before marriage. These findings suggest there may be an overall inverse association between marijuana use and IPV perpetration in newly married couples, although use may be associated with greater risk of perpetration among women with a history of IPV perpetration. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Health risk perceptions predict smoking-related outcomes in Greek college students.Open in a New Window

Health risk perception in smoking behavior was prospectively evaluated in a cluster-randomized trial for smoking cessation in Greek college students. Perceived Vulnerability (PV), Precaution Effectiveness, Optimistic Bias, and smoking behavior measures (quit attempts and cessation) were assessed in college-aged Greek student smokers at baseline, end of treatment (3 months), and follow-up (6 months). Using generalized estimating equations, baseline risk perception variables and change in risk perception variables between baseline and end of treatment were examined as predictors of the dichotomous smoking outcome variables. Results revealed that higher baseline PV [OR = 1.42 (1.21, 1.68)] predicted a greater likelihood of a quit attempt (n = 267). An increased likelihood of cessation [OR = 1.41 (1.15, 1.72)] was also predicted by an increase in PV from baseline to end of treatment (n = 243). Overall results suggested that PV was the strongest predictor of smoking behavior change, supporting further examination of health risk perceptions in promoting smoking cessation among Greek college smokers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


The effects of nicotine dose expectancy and motivationally relevant distracters on vigilance.Open in a New Window

The imminence of drug use (i.e., drug availability) has been found to be related to intensity of drug craving, but its effects on attentional bias to drug cues are unclear. This study investigated the effects of nicotine availability on attentional bias to smoking, affective, and neutral cues in a sample of adult smokers during a vigilance task. At the beginning of each of 4 laboratory sessions, overnight nicotine-deprived smokers (n = 51) were instructed that they would smoke a cigarette containing either nicotine (Told-NIC) or no nicotine (Told-DENIC) after completing the rapid visual information processing task with central emotional distracters (RVIP-CED). The RVIP-CED presented digits at a rapid pace, with participants instructed to respond with button presses to every third consecutive even or odd digit. Some digits were preceded by smoking, pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral distracter slides. During Told-NIC conditions, participants produced significantly longer reaction time (RT) latency than during Told-DENIC conditions. RT sensitivity (d′), a measure of the ability to discriminate true positives from false positives, was significantly lower during the Told-NIC than during the Told-DENIC conditions to targets following cigarette distracters. These results suggest that nicotine-deprived smokers expecting to imminently smoke a cigarette experience greater distraction, particularly to smoking-related stimuli, than when expecting to smoke a denicotinized cigarette. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Clarifying the relationship between impulsive delay discounting and nicotine dependence.Open in a New Window

Impulsive delayed reward discounting (DRD) has been linked to nicotine dependence, but with some inconsistency. This may be related to the considerable variability in the literature with regard to the DRD assessments used, particularly in the case of the reward magnitudes assessed. In addition, previous studies have often not considered concurrent substance use when examining the relationship between DRD and nicotine dependence. The current study sought to further clarify the relationship between DRD and nicotine dependence by characterizing DRD across diverse reward magnitudes and incorporating other substance use. Daily smokers (N = 933) were assessed for DRD preferences across nine reward magnitudes (delayed reward range: $2.50–$850), comorbid substance use, and relevant demographic variables (age, education, income). A significant large effect size magnitude effect was found for DRD, reflecting steeper discounting for smaller delayed rewards, but significant correlations across magnitudes also suggested similar relative levels of discounting. Principal components analysis (PCA) was used to generate a single latent index of discounting across all magnitudes that accounted for 69% of the total variance. In correlation and regression analyses, steeper composite DRD was significantly associated with nicotine dependence severity. This relationship remained statistically significant after incorporating demographic variables and alcohol and illicit drug use. These findings provide evidence of a specific link between impulsive DRD and nicotine dependence and reveal that this association is robust across a broad range of monetary rewards. The study also demonstrates the utility of using PCA to generate latent indices of delay discounting across multiple magnitudes of delayed reward. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


The prevalence and determinants of problem gambling in Australia: Assessing the impact of interactive gambling and new technologies.Open in a New Window

New technology is changing the nature of gambling with interactive modes of gambling becoming putatively associated with higher rates of problem gambling. This paper presents the first nationally representative data on the prevalence and correlates of problem gambling among Australian adults since 1999 and focuses on the impact of interactive gambling. A telephone survey of 15,006 adults was conducted. Of these, 2,010 gamblers (all interactive gamblers and a randomly selected subsample of those reporting land-based gambling in the past 12 months) also completed more detailed measures of problem gambling, substance use, psychological distress, and help-seeking. Problem gambling rates among interactive gamblers were 3 times higher than for noninteractive gamblers. However, problem and moderate risk gamblers were most likely to attribute problems to electronic gaming machines and land-based gambling, suggesting that although interactive forms of gambling are associated with substantial problems, interactive gamblers experience significant harms from land-based gambling. The findings demonstrate that problem gambling remains a significant public health issue that is changing in response to new technologies, and it is important to develop strategies that minimize harms among interactive gamblers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Concordant and discordant alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use as predictors of marital dissolution.Open in a New Window

This study examined concordant and discrepant alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use among couples to determine whether they predicted marital separation or divorce over 9 years. The study recruited 634 couples as they applied for their marriage licenses; we assessed them at that time and reassessed them with mailed questionnaires at their first, second, fourth, seventh, and ninth wedding anniversaries. Approximately 60% of the men and women were European American, and approximately 33% were African American. The frequency of drinking to intoxication and binge drinking (more than 5 drinks in an occasion) was assessed, as was the use of cigarettes and marijuana. At each assessment, each member of the couple was asked about the occurrence of marital separations and divorce. Bivariate analyses indicated that tobacco and marijuana use, whether discrepant or concordant, were associated with marital disruptions. However, discrepant heavy drinking was associated with disruptions, but concordant heavy drinking was not. Concordant and discordant marijuana use were not associated with divorce when analyses controlled for alcohol and tobacco use. Concordant and discordant tobacco use was not associated with divorce when analyses controlled for sociodemographic and personality factors. However, discrepant alcohol use was related to divorce after controlling for the other substances in 1 analysis and after controlling for the sociodemographic factors in a separate analysis. Tobacco and marijuana use were related to divorce through their associations with other variables. However, results suggest that discrepant alcohol use may lead to marital disruptions and should be addressed with couples seeking marital treatment. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Sexual-orientation disparities in substance use in emerging adults: A function of stress and attachment paradigms.Open in a New Window

More lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) youths than heterosexuals report substance use. We examined a theoretical model to understand these disparities in lifetime and past-year substance use by means of stress and attachment paradigms, using the longitudinal Growing Up Today Study (GUTS) and Nurses’ Health Study II (NHSII). GUTS participants are the children of participants in NHSII; thus, child and maternal data are available. In addition, GUTS contains siblings, allowing for comparisons of LGB and heterosexual siblings. Of 5,647 GUTS youths (M = 20.6 years old in 2005), 1.6% were lesbian/gay (LG), 1.6% bisexual (BI), 9.9% mostly heterosexual (MH), and 86.9% completely heterosexual (CH). After adjusting for sibling clustering in GUTS and covariates, significantly more sexual minorities (LGs, BIs, and MHs) than CHs reported lifetime and past-year smoking, nonmarijuana illicit drug use, and prescription drug misuse. More sexual minorities also reported marijuana use in the past year. The relations between sexual orientation and substance use were moderated by the stress markers: As mother’s discomfort with homosexuality increased, more BIs and MHs than CHs used substances. As childhood gender nonconforming behaviors increased, more LGs than CHs used substances. The relations between sexual orientation and substance use were mediated by attachment and maternal affection (percent of effect mediated ranged from 5.6% to 16.8%% for lifetime substance use and 4.9% to 24.5% for past-year use). In addition, sibling comparisons found that sexual minorities reported more substance use, more childhood gender nonconforming behaviors, and less secure attachment than CH siblings; mothers reported less affection for their sexual minority than CH offspring. The findings indicate the importance of stress and attachment paradigms for understanding sexual-orientation disparities in substance use. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Brain reward region responsivity of adolescents with and without parental substance use disorders.Open in a New Window

The present study tested the competing hypotheses that adolescents at risk for future substance abuse and dependence by virtue of parental substance use disorders show either weaker or stronger responsivity of brain regions implicated in reward relative to youth without parental history of substance use disorders. Adolescents (n = 52) matched on demographics with and without parental substance use disorders, as determined by diagnostic interviews, who denied substance use in the past year were compared on functional MRI (fMRI) paradigms assessing neural response to receipt and anticipated receipt of monetary and food reward. Parental-history-positive versus -negative adolescents showed greater activation in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and bilateral putamen, and less activation in the fusiform gyrus and inferior temporal gyrus in response to anticipating winning money, as well as greater activation in the left midbrain and right paracentral lobule, and less activation in the right middle frontal gyrus in response to milkshake receipt. Results indicate that adolescents at risk for future onset of substance use disorders show elevated responsivity of brain regions implicated in reward, extending results from 2 smaller prior studies that found that individuals with versus without parental alcohol use disorders showed greater reward region response to anticipated monetary reward and pictures of alcohol. Collectively, results provide support for the reward surfeit model of substance use disorders, rather than the reward deficit model. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Evaluation of underlying mechanisms in the link between childhood ADHD symptoms and risk for early initiation of substance use.Open in a New Window

Although there has been support for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as a risk for early substance use, this link is not fully established or understood. Furthermore, the potential mechanisms explaining these associations are unclear. The current study examined peer rejection, school bonding, and internalizing problems as potential mediators of the association between childhood ADHD symptoms and risk for early initiation of substance use. The sample included a control group of 126 students with problematic aggression (79% African American, 66% male) from an intervention study following children from fourth to ninth grade. Results suggested that ADHD symptoms follow a path to early initiation of tobacco use through the combined effects of peer rejection and internalizing problems as well as through internalizing problems alone. ADHD symptoms were also associated with the cubic slope of marijuana use initiation, such that increased ADHD symptoms were associated with a strong cubic trend (e.g., a more rapid acceleration of risk for initiation). ADHD symptoms were not associated with risk for early initiation of alcohol use. Identification of important vulnerability factors in children with ADHD symptoms highlight the need for primary prevention and psychological interventions that target these factors and decrease the likelihood of early tobacco and marijuana use initiation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Internalizing and externalizing problem behavior and early adolescent substance use: A test of a latent variable interaction and conditional indirect effects.Open in a New Window

Externalizing problem behavior is a robust predictor of early adolescent substance use (SU); however, findings regarding internalizing problems have been mixed, suggesting that there may be important moderators of the relationship between internalizing problems and SU. The present study used a community sample (mean age was 12.1 at the first assessment, 55% women, 83% White) to test a longitudinal latent variable interaction structural equation model to examine whether externalizing problems moderated the relationship between internalizing problems and SU. Peer delinquency was tested as a mediator in the model and prior levels of the mediator and outcome were controlled at each wave to establish temporal precedence. Results suggested that (1) internalizing problems were protective against associating with deviant peers, but only at high levels of externalizing symptomatology, (2) higher levels of peer delinquency were associated with increases in SU, and (3) peer delinquency mediated the effect of the problem behavior interaction on SU. Our findings suggest that the impact of internalizing problems on peer delinquency and SU needs to be considered in the context of externalizing problems. Moreover, developmental models involving internalizing symptoms should consider that internalizing symptoms are generally protective against substance use in early adolescence. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Risk pathways among traumatic stress, posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms, and alcohol and drug problems: A test of four hypotheses.Open in a New Window

The present study utilized longitudinal data from a community sample (n = 377; 166 trauma-exposed; 54% males; 73% non-Hispanic Caucasian; 22% Hispanic; 5% other ethnicity) to test whether pretrauma substance use problems increase risk for trauma exposure (high-risk hypothesis) or posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms (susceptibility hypothesis), whether PTSD symptoms increase risk for later alcohol/drug problems (self-medication hypothesis), and whether the association between PTSD symptoms and alcohol/drug problems is attributable to shared risk factors (shared vulnerability hypothesis). Logistic and negative binomial regressions were performed in a path analysis framework. Results provided the strongest support for the self-medication hypothesis, such that PTSD symptoms predicted higher levels of later alcohol and drug problems, over and above the influences of pretrauma family risk factors, pretrauma substance use problems, trauma exposure, and demographic variables. Results partially supported the high-risk hypothesis, such that adolescent substance use problems increased risk for assaultive violence exposure but did not influence overall risk for trauma exposure. There was no support for the susceptibility hypothesis. Finally, there was little support for the shared vulnerability hypothesis. Neither trauma exposure nor preexisting family adversity accounted for the link between PTSD symptoms and later substance use problems. Rather, PTSD symptoms mediated the effect of pretrauma family adversity on later alcohol and drug problems, thereby supporting the self-medication hypothesis. These findings make important contributions to better understanding the directions of influence among traumatic stress, PTSD symptoms, and substance use problems. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Application of item response theory to tests of substance-related associative memory.Open in a New Window

A substance-related word-association test (WAT) is one of the commonly used indirect tests of substance-related implicit associative memory and has been shown to predict substance use. This study applied an item response theory (IRT) modeling approach to evaluate psychometric properties of the alcohol- and marijuana-related WATs and their items among 775 ethnically diverse at-risk adolescents. After examining the IRT assumptions, item fit, and differential item functioning (DIF) across gender and age groups, the original 18 WAT items were reduced to 14 and 15 items in the alcohol- and marijuana-related WAT, respectively. Thereafter, unidimensional one- and two-parameter logistic models (1PL and 2PL models) were fitted to the revised WAT items. The results demonstrated that both alcohol- and marijuana-related WATs have good psychometric properties. These results were discussed in light of the framework of a unified concept of construct validity (Messick, 1975, 1989, 1995). (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Translation of associative learning models into extinction reminders delivered via mobile phones during cue exposure interventions for substance use.Open in a New Window

Despite experimental findings and some treatment research supporting the use of cues as a means to induce and extinguish cravings, interventions using cue exposure have not been well integrated into contemporary substance abuse treatments. A primary problem with exposure-based interventions for addiction is that after learning not to use substances in the presence of addiction cues inside the clinic (i.e., extinction), stimuli in the naturalistic setting outside the clinic may continue to elicit craving, drug use, or other maladaptive conditioned responses. For exposure-based substance use interventions to be efficacious, new approaches are needed that can prevent relapse by directly generalizing learning from the therapeutic setting into naturalistic settings associated with a high risk for relapse. Basic research suggests that extinction reminders (ERs) can be paired with the context of learning new and more adaptive conditioned responses to substance abuse cues in exposure therapies for addiction. Using mobile phones and automated dialing and data collection software, ERs can be delivered in everyday high-risk settings to inhibit conditioned responses to substance-use-related stimuli. In this review, we describe how associative learning mechanisms (e.g., conditioned inhibition) can inform how ERs are conceptualized, learned, and implemented to prevent substance use when delivered via mobile phones. This approach, exposure with portable reminders of extinction, is introduced as an adjunctive intervention that uses brief automated ERs between clinic visits when individuals are in high-risk settings for drug use. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Social desirability and change following substance abuse treatment in male offenders.Open in a New Window

The efficacy of cognitive–behavioral treatment for substance abuse is contingent on changing clients’ attitudes, beliefs, and expectancies. Assessing such change with self-report instruments may be problematic in offenders to the extent that they perceive that treatment success may secure privileges. This study assesses the extent to which increases in social desirability predict improvement in self-efficacy, perceptions of control, and perceived ability to cope and resist use of drugs. Male offenders in a moderate-intensity (N = 1,431) and a high-intensity (N = 316) substance abuse program were assessed before and after treatment on a range of beliefs and attitudes targeted in treatment, along with a measure of social desirability. Regression analyses indicate that those reporting the greatest increase in social desirability also reported the greatest improvement in attitudes and beliefs about drug and alcohol use, thereby suggesting that such self-report measures of change should be regarded with a degree of skepticism. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Evaluating age differences in coping motives as a mediator of the link between social anxiety symptoms and alcohol problems.Open in a New Window

The goal of this study is to evaluate whether coping motives mediate the relationship between self-reported symptoms of social anxiety and alcohol problems across different age groups, building on previous research conducted among emerging adults. This study focuses on adult drinkers, including emerging adults (aged 18–25 years; n = 148), young adults (aged 26–39 years; n = 68), and middle-aged adults (aged 40–65 years; n = 51). All participants completed measures of social anxiety symptoms, alcohol problems, and coping motives, administered via the Web. Invariance tests using structural equation modeling suggested that among emerging adults (and to some degree middle-aged adults), coping motives mediated the positive relationship between symptoms of social anxiety and alcohol problems. Interestingly, coping motives appeared to suppress a negative relationship between social anxiety and alcohol problems in young adults. Results suggest that it is critical to consider age differences when attempting to understand the relationships between symptoms of social anxiety, alcohol problems, and coping motives. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Social anxiety and alcohol-related negative consequences among college drinkers: Do protective behavioral strategies mediate the association?Open in a New Window

The link between social anxiety and alcohol-related negative consequences among college students has been well documented. Protective behavioral strategies are cognitive–behavioral strategies that college students use in an effort to reduce harm while they are drinking. In the current study we examined the mediating role of the 2 categories of protective behavioral strategies (i.e., controlled consumption and serious harm reduction) in the relationship that social anxiety symptoms have with alcohol-related negative consequences. Participants were 572 undergraduates who completed measures of social anxiety, alcohol use, negative consequences of alcohol use, and protective behavioral strategy use. Only serious harm reduction strategies emerged as a mediator of the association that social anxiety symptoms had with alcohol-related negative consequences. Clinical and research implications are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Relational aggression, positive urgency and negative urgency: Predicting alcohol use and consequences among college students.Open in a New Window

Research on relational aggression (indirect and social means of inflicting harm) has previously focused on adolescent populations. The current study extends this research by exploring both the frequency of perpetrating and being the target of relational aggression as it relates to alcohol use outcomes in a college population. Further, this study examines whether positive urgency (e.g., acting impulsively in response to positive emotions) and negative urgency (e.g., acting impulsively in response to negative emotions) moderate the relationship between relational aggression and alcohol outcomes. In this study, 245 college students (65.7% female) completed an online survey. Results indicated greater frequency of perpetrating relational aggression, higher levels of positive urgency, or higher levels of negative urgency was associated with more negative consequences. Further, negative urgency moderated the relationship between frequency of perpetrating aggression and consequences such that aggression was more strongly associated with consequences for those high in urgency. Counter to the adolescent literature, the frequency of being the target of aggression was not associated with more alcohol use. These findings suggest that perpetrators of relational aggression may be at particular risk for negative alcohol-related consequences when they act impulsively in response to negative, but not positive, emotions. These students may benefit from interventions exploring alternative ways to cope with negative emotions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Reported planning before and after quitting and quit success: Retrospective data from the ITC 4-Country Survey.Open in a New Window

Planning before quitting smoking is widely believed to be beneficial and is usually recommended in cessation counseling, but there is little evidence on the efficacy of specific planning activities. Using data from 1140 respondents who reported quit attempts at Wave 8 of the ITC 4-Country Survey, we analyzed use of 8 specific planning strategies before (5) and after (3) implementation of a quit attempt, in relation to cessation outcomes, delay in implementation of the attempt, and recent quitting history. Most participants reported some planning both before and after quitting, even among those reporting quitting ‘spontaneously.’ Younger smokers, those who cut down before quitting, and users of stop-smoking medication were more likely to report planning. Those who planned prequit were also more likely to plan postquit. Unexpectedly, we found no clear benefit of planning on short-term (1 month) cessation outcomes, whereas one prequit strategy (practicing not smoking) was negatively related to outcome. There was evidence for a predicted moderating effect of recent quitting experience on planning for the prequit task ‘practice replacement strategies.’ This predicted quit success among those with multiple quit attempts in the past year, but failure among those without. This finding suggests that the quality of planning may be critical. More research, particularly on the moderating effect of quit experience, and where measures of planning are collected before outcomes become evident, is needed before clear recommendations can be made on the utility of various forms of planning for the success of quit attempts. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Trait hostility and hostile interpretation biases in daily smokers: Associations with reasons for smoking, motivation to quit, and early smoking lapse.Open in a New Window

Hostility has emerged as an important predictor of smoking cessation difficulties, though the mechanisms underlying the hostility and smoking relationship are poorly understood. Further, research has yet to explore relations between hostile interpretation biases and different aspects of smoking behavior. In the present study, current daily smokers (N = 106) were administered measures of smoking characteristics, smoking motivation, reasons for quitting, hostility, and hostile interpretation bias. Neither trait hostility nor hostile interpretation bias were uniquely associated with motivation to quit, reasons for quitting, nicotine dependence, or problematic symptoms following past cessation attempts. However, hostility and hostile interpretation biases were uniquely associated with different reasons for smoking. Additionally, greater hostile interpretation bias (but not hostility) was uniquely associated with early relapse following past cessation attempts. The current findings add uniquely to the growing, but still relatively small, literature on hostility and smoking and implicate hostile interpretation bias as a potential treatment target in smoking cessation interventions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Anxiety sensitivity mediates relations between emotional disorders and smoking.Open in a New Window

Research has documented consistent and robust relations between emotional disorders (i.e., depressive and anxiety disorders) and smoking. Yet, it is presently unclear whether anxiety sensitivity—the fear of aversive internal anxiety states—accounts for the relations between emotional disorders and various smoking processes, including nicotine dependence, perceived barriers to smoking cessation, and severity of problematic symptoms during past cessation attempts. Participants (N = 465) were treatment-seeking daily tobacco smokers recruited as part of a larger tobacco-cessation study. Baseline (pretreatment) data were utilized. Emotional disorders were assessed via clinical diagnostic interview; self-report measures were used to assess anxiety sensitivity and 3 criterion variables: nicotine dependence, barriers to smoking cessation, and severity of problematic symptoms while quitting in past attempts. Emotional disorders were predictive of higher levels of nicotine dependence, greater perceived barriers to cessation, and greater severity of problematic symptoms while attempting to quit in the past; each of these relations were accounted for by the indirect effect of anxiety sensitivity. The present findings suggest that anxiety sensitivity may be an important transdiagnostic construct in explicating the nature of the relations between emotional disorders and various smoking processes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


The influence of self-exempting beliefs and social networks on daily smoking: A mediation relationship explored.Open in a New Window

The decision to initiate, maintain, or quit cigarette smoking is structured by both social networks and health beliefs. Self-exempting beliefs affect people’s decisions in favor of a behavior even when they recognize the harm associated with it. This study incorporated the literatures on social networks and self-exempting beliefs to study the problem of daily smoking by exploring their mediatory relationships and the mechanisms of how smoking behavior is developed and maintained. Specifically, this article hypothesizes that social networks affect daily smoking directly as well as indirectly by facilitating the formation of self-exempting beliefs. The sample comes from urban male residents in Hangzhou, China randomly selected and interviewed through multistage sampling in 2011. Using binary mediation analysis with logistic regression to test the hypotheses, the authors found that (a) daily smoking is associated with having smokers in several social network arenas and (b) self-exempting beliefs about smoking mediate the association between coworker network and daily smoking, but not for family network and friend network. The role of social network at work place in the creation and maintenance of self-exempting beliefs should be considered by policymakers, prevention experts, and interventionists. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Where there’s a will there’s a way: A longitudinal investigation of the interplay between recovery motivation and self-efficacy in predicting treatment outcome.Open in a New Window

The psychological construct of self-efficacy plays a key role in both general, as well as addiction-specific, models of health behavior change and is well supported empirically. As a predictor of treatment outcome it has proven useful; however, to further clarify the nature and role of self-efficacy in predicting the complexities of addiction recovery, it would seem crucial also to consider an individuals’ motivation to carry out that future behavior, because the degree to which a measure of self-efficacy predicts behavior may be contingent upon whether that individual is also motivated to enact it. To this end, we tested an interaction model of self-efficacy and motivation on treatment outcome. Young adults (N = 302; M = 20 years; 74% male) undergoing residential substance use disorder treatment were assessed at treatment intake, discharge, and 3, 6, and 12 months postdischarge on self-efficacy (SE), motivation for sobriety (MS), and percent days abstinent (PDA). Hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) results revealed main effects for abstinence SE and MS across time, but a significant interaction was detected, indicating that the influence of SE on PDA depended on MS. Further analysis revealed that for patients high in SE the level of MS made a small, but significant, difference on PDA, whereas for those low in SE, high MS made a substantial difference, such that their outcome was not different than patients with high SE. Findings highlight conceptual nuances in SE theory; and, clinically, convey optimism that, even if a patient reports low confidence in their ability to remain abstinent, it does not necessarily follow that they will have poor outcome, especially if they have a strong recovery motivation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)


Self-perceived emerging adult status and substance use.Open in a New Window

Very little research exists on how self-perceived emerging adult status is associated with substance use among low-income emerging adults. The Inventory of Dimensions of Emerging Adulthood (IDEA) was administered to emerging adults (EAs) ages 18–25 screened for substance use problems (n = l05) in a state-subsidized, not-for-profit treatment agency. We examined whether the defining dimensions of Arnett’s (2000a) emerging adulthood theory were associated with substance use frequency and substance-related problems, including: identity exploration, self-focus, possibilities, optimism, negativity/instability, and feeling in-between. In multivariate models, feeling in-between was positively associated with substance-related problems. An interaction term between minority status and feeling in-between approached statistical significance (p = .057). Further, IDEA scale score means were comparable to those found in college student samples. Implications for theory revision are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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