Impulsivity-like traits and smoking behavior in college students.

TitleImpulsivity-like traits and smoking behavior in college students.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2010
JournalAddictive behaviors

Recent research has deconstructed the concept of impulsivity by identifying five different traits that influence engagement in impulsive behaviors: positive urgency (tendency to act rashly in response to a positive mood), negative urgency (tendency to act rashly in response to a negative mood), sensation seeking, lack of planning, and lack of perseverance. The traits are only moderately related to each other. The aim of this study was to apply this advance to the study of smoking. We tested a two-stage hypothesis: Higher sensation seeking was hypothesized to differentiate current smokers from non-smokers, and negative and positive urgencies were expected to predict concurrent level of nicotine dependence among smokers. As anticipated, greater sensation seeking was associated with a higher odds of being a current smoker (odds ratio=1.51). Greater positive urgency, but not other impulsivity-related traits, was associated with significantly higher levels of nicotine dependence, explaining 29% of the variance in level of nicotine dependence.

Short TitleAddict Behav
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