The role of anxiety sensitivity in the relation between trait worry and smoking behavior

Hyaneyoung Olvera, Jafar Bakhshaie, Lorra Garey, Charles Jardin, Norman B Schmidt, Michael J Zvolensky
Nicotine & Tobacco Research: Official Journal of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco 2015, 17 (6): 682-9

INTRODUCTION: Smoking and anxiety disorders frequently co-occur. Trait worry is a core symptom of anxiety disorders. While research suggests worry processes may be important to certain smoking behaviors, the mechanisms explicating these relations remain unknown.

METHOD: The current study examined anxiety sensitivity (AS) as a potential mediator for the relation between trait worry and number of years being a daily smoker, latency to first cigarette of the day, smoking rate, heaviness of smoking, and nicotine dependence among treatment-seeking daily smokers (N = 376; 47% female; M age = 37.76, SD = 13.46).

RESULTS: Consistent with prediction, AS significantly mediated the relations between trait worry and the studied smoking variables.

CONCLUSION: The present findings suggest it may be useful to clinically address AS among worry-prone, treatment-seeking daily smokers in order to address smoking behavior.

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