Psychology, Department of

 

Date of this Version

January 2007

Comments

Published in Addictive Behaviors 33 (2008) 167–172. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. Used by permission.

Abstract

Individuals with high levels of impulsivity are more likely to smoke and may have greater difficulty quitting than other smokers. Although the specific mechanisms mediating this relationship are not explicitly known, one candidate is disproportionate cigarette craving in response to environmental smoking cues. We assessed the effect of impulsivity on three measures of cue reactivity. Regular smokers (n=75) were exposed to a smoking cue and a neutral cue in 2 counterbalanced experimental sessions. Cigarette craving, heart rate (HR), and mean arterial pressure (MAP) were used to index cue reactivity. More impulsive smokers exhibited a disproportionate response to the smoking cue in terms of MAP (p=.009) but not HR or craving. Impulsive smokers may experience disproportionate cigarette craving in response to environmental smoking cues that are not reflected in self-report measures due to a relative lack of conscious awareness of the urge to smoke.