Trait hostility and hostile interpretation biases in daily smokers: associations with reasons for smoking, motivation to quit, and early smoking lapse

Jesse R Cougle, Kirsten A Hawkins, Richard J Macatee, Michael J Zvolensky, Shivali Sarawgi
Psychology of Addictive Behaviors: Journal of the Society of Psychologists in Addictive Behaviors 2014, 28 (3): 907-911
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.

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