Cigarette Smoking and Risk of Alcohol Use Relapse Among Adults in Recovery from Alcohol Use Disorders
Individuals in recovery from alcohol use disorders (AUDs) frequently continue to smoke cigarettes. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between cigarette smoking status and risk of AUD relapse in adults with remitted AUDs among adults in the United States.
Data were drawn from Wave 1 (2001 to 2002) and Wave 2 (2004 to 2005) of the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions. Analyses included the subsample of respondents who completed both waves of data collection reported a history of alcohol abuse and/or dependence prior to Wave 1 (N = 9,134). Relationships between Wave 1 cigarette smoking status (nonsmoker, daily cigarette smoker, and nondaily cigarette smoker) and Wave 2 alcohol use, abuse, and dependence were examined using logistic regression analyses. Analyses were adjusted for Wave 1 demographics; mood, anxiety, and substance use disorders; nicotine dependence; and AUD severity.
Both daily and nondaily cigarette smoking at Wave 1 were significantly associated with a lower likelihood of alcohol use and a greater likelihood of alcohol abuse and dependence at Wave 2 compared to Wave 1 nonsmoking. These relationships remained significant after adjusting for demographics, psychiatric disorders, substance use disorders, AUD severity, and nicotine dependence.
Among adults with remitted AUDs, daily and nondaily use of cigarettes was associated with significantly decreased likelihood of alcohol use and increased likelihood of alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence 3 years later. Concurrent treatment of cigarette smoking when treating AUDs may help improve long-term alcohol outcomes and reduce the negative consequences of both substances.