Navigation Links
Study Probes Why Smokers Find It Hard to Quit
Date:9/9/2008

When not in a state of craving, they may underestimate intensity of future urge to light up

TUESDAY, Sept. 9 (HealthDay News) -- If you're not craving a hit of nicotine the moment you declare you are quitting smoking, your battle just got a little tougher, say researchers at the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University.

"We have observed previously that the idea of smoking a cigarette becomes increasingly attractive to smokers while they are craving," lead investigator Michael Sayette, a University of Pittsburgh professor of psychology, said in a university news release. "This study suggests that when smokers are not craving, they fail to appreciate just how powerful their cravings will be. This lack of insight while not craving may lead them to make decisions -- such as choosing to attend a party where there will be lots of smoking -- that they may come to regret."

The study, published in the September issue of Psychological Science, examines the "cold-to-hot empathy gap" -- that is, the tendency for people in a "cold" state (one not influenced by visceral factors such as hunger or fatigue) to improperly predict their own behavior when in a "hot" state (hungry, fatigued). This is, in part, because those in the cold state can't recall the intensity of their past cravings.

The researchers gathered 98 smokers for two experimental sessions. Those put in a "hot" state were asked to not smoke for 12 hours prior to the first session, then were induced to crave a cigarette by holding but not smoking a lit one. Those in a "cold" state smoked up until the first session but did not hold a lit cigarette. A comparison group skipped the first session completely.

During the first session, "hot" and "cold" participants were asked how much money they would need to delay smoking for five minutes in the second session, a time when all participants would be in a "hot" state. Smokers in all three groups had to abstain from smoking for 12 hours before the second session started, and were asked to hold -- but not smoke -- a lit cigarette during the session.

When asked the money question in the second session, the "cold" smokers from the first session asked for significantly more money to delay smoking for just five minutes while those originally in a "hot" state did not request an increase.

Those from the "cold" group were also much less likely to accurately predict how much money they would need to delay lighting up. Almost half of the "cold" smokers requested more money than what they had initially predicted, while only 25 percent of the "hot" group did the same.

"These findings suggest that smokers are likely to underpredict their own future desire to smoke when they're not craving a cigarette," study co-author George Loewenstein, the Herbert A. Simon Professor of Economics and Psychology at Carnegie Mellon, said in the news release. "The research not only has implications for helping smokers quit, but it also enlightens us on how nonsmokers may pick up the habit. If smokers can't appreciate the intensity of their need to smoke when they aren't currently craving, what's the likelihood that people who have never smoked can do so?"

More information

The American Cancer Society has more about how to quit smoking.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: Carnegie Mellon University, news release, Aug. 26, 2008


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. LegDisorders.org Launches a Dynamic Web-Based Series of CME Certified Activities Entitled: Recognizing and Managing Diseases of The Leg: A Self-Study Program
2. Better care of sickest patients can actually save hospitals money, says largest study of its kind
3. Researchers receive grant to study ways of preventing heart disease
4. Safety study indicates gene therapy for blindness improves vision
5. NIH launches unique effort to advance study of urologic chronic pelvic pain disorders
6. Study firmly shows no connection between measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine and autism
7. Oncology Clinical Research Scientist Recommends a Nuanced Preclinical Study Process to Speed Drug Development
8. Neutral HIV presentations more likely to be considered inviting, study finds
9. Study: Delaying evolution of drug resistance in malaria parasite possible
10. Study Links Serum Calcium, Prostate Cancer Death
11. Height May Boost Prostate Cancer Risk, Study Suggests
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, ... and his M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained ... Angeles to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... surgery procedures that most people are unfamiliar with. The article goes on to state ... procedures, but also many of these less common operations such as calf and cheek ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant new grants to support ... as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical professionals and scientists ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join The ‘Business for a Fair Minimum Wage’ ... 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase at the same rate as the median ... floor does not erode again, and make future increases more predictable. , The company is ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Puradigm® ... Group (TGIG), has initiated cultivation and processing operations at its production facility, and ... Nevada. , Puradigm is the manufacturer of a complete system of proactive air ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Any dentist who has ... of the current process. Many of them do not even ... technical difficulties and high laboratory costs involved. And those who ... it at such a high cost that the majority of ... Dr. Parsa Zadeh , founder of Dental Evolutions ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016  In a startling report released today, ... residents by lacking a comprehensive, proven plan to eliminate prescription opioid ... ranking of how states are tackling the worst drug crisis in ... states – Kentucky , New Mexico ... . Of the 28 failing states, three – ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Research ... MEMS Devices Medical Market Analysis 2016 - Forecast to 2022" ... The report contains up to date financial data ... analysis. Assessment of major trends with potential impact on the ... analysis of market segmentation which comprises of sub markets, regional ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: