Author(s): Brown RA, Lejuez CW, Kahler CW, Strong DR, Zvolensky MJ
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Abstract A significant percentage of smokers attempting cessation lapse to smoking within a matter of days and very few of these individuals recover to achieve abstinence. Current models of relapse devote insufficient attention to this phenomenon of early smoking lapse. Furthermore, studies attempting to relate severity of nicotine withdrawal symptoms to short-term smoking cessation outcomes have yielded equivocal results. The authors argue that how one reacts to the discomfort of nicotine withdrawal is a more promising avenue of investigation than severity of withdrawal and that inability to tolerate the distress of nicotine withdrawal and associated negative affect is a key factor in early smoking lapse and subsequent relapse. Theoretical and clinical implications of distress tolerance in smoking cessation are discussed and the development of a specialized and novel behavioral distress tolerance treatment for early smoking lapsers is proposed.
This article was published in Clin Psychol Rev
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy