Relationship of Self-Reported and Acute Stress to Smoking in Emerging Adult Smokers


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In the current study, we examined subjective and objective measures of stress and their relationship to baseline and future cigarette smoking behaviors over a 1-year follow-up in young adult experimental smokers.


Participants (N = 56) completed two laboratory sessions to determine subjective and objective responses to a controlled laboratory stressor versus a control task. Baseline measures included drug use and smoking histories and a self-report measure of habitual stress (i.e., daily hassles). They were re-contacted 1 year after the laboratory sessions to determine smoking status.


There was wide variability in smoking trajectories, with 34% of participants increasing their smoking over the course of the year. Contrary to predictions, neither daily hassles nor stress reactivity was related to smoking at baseline or change over the year.


These preliminary findings suggest that daily stress or responses to acute social stress are not strong predictors of progression in emerging adult smokers.