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Brazilian Journal of Psychiatry

Print version ISSN 1516-4446On-line version ISSN 1809-452X


ARAUJO, Renata Brasil; OLIVEIRA, Margareth da Silva; PEDROSO, Rosemeri Siqueira  and  CASTRO, Maria da Graça Tanori de. Coping strategies for craving management in nicotine dependent patients. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 2009, vol.31, n.2, pp.89-94. ISSN 1516-4446.

OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to investigate the association between the intensity of craving and the types of coping skills used by nicotine-dependent patients. METHOD: This was an experimental study. The sample comprised 201 subjects, mean age 38.15 years. The participants were randomly divided into groups of zero, 30 and 60 minutes of nicotine abstinence. The following instruments were administered: the Chart of Sociodemographic Data, the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence, the Questionnaire of Smoking Urges, and the Coping Strategies Inventory. RESULTS: The most frequently used coping strategies are presented in descending order: accepting responsibility, self-control and distancing. There was a positive correlation between the confrontive coping strategy and the total score on the Questionnaire of Smoking Urges (rs = 0.146; p = 0.045) and the score on Factor 1 (rs = 0.165; p = 0.023). CONCLUSION: The most intense craving can lead nicotine-dependent individuals to use confrontive coping strategies that make them unable to control their emotions or to face the situations of high risk of relapse. This finding demonstrates that the treatment of smokers should include psychological education about the pitfalls of using these types of strategy and should teach them new types of coping strategies for craving management.

Keywords : Questionnaires; Tobacco; Nicotine; Treatment; Patient.

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