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Member Research & Reports

Member Research & Reports

UAB: Longitudinal and Reciprocal Relationships Between Psychological Well-Being and Smoking

Smoking cessation treatments currently succeed at a rate of approximately 2 percent-30 percent, underscoring the importance of exploring factors that might increase intervention effectiveness. Although negative affect has been studied extensively in relation to smoking cessation, psychological well-being (PWB; eg, life satisfaction, optimism, positive affect, purpose in life) has received little attention. This study tested longitudinal and reciprocal relationships between PWB and smoking status in older adults. This expanded scope could expose additional mechanisms that promote long-term abstinence.

A team of researchers collaborated on this study, including Dr. Peter Hendricks, Dr. Sara Lappan, and Mr. Christopher Thorne, Department of Health Behavior, and Dr. Dustin Long, Department of Biostatistics, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health.

Given the relatively low success rate of current smoking cessation treatments, the present results suggest that increasing PWB might promote abstinence and therefore warrant consideration as a focus of future cessation treatment research. These results suggest that smoking might inhibit PWB, illuminating a negative consequence of smoking not previously identified.

Helping smokers increase their PWB may benefit them beyond promoting cessation and contribute to a flourishing society. These results warrant further investigation of PWB and smoking, and support the continued evaluation of PWB-boosting components in smoking cessation treatments.

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