The Effects of Alcohol on Cigarette Craving in Heavy Smokers and Tobacco Chippers

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The authors examined the effects of alcohol consumption on cigarette craving in heavy smokers and tobacco chippers (n = 138) who were instructed not to smoke for 12 hr. Participants were exposed to both smoking cues (a lit cigarette) and control cues. Half received a moderate dose of alcohol, adjusted for gender, and half received a placebo. Results indicated that alcohol consumption produced an increase in urge-to-smoke ratings before smoking cue exposure. Moreover, during cue exposure, alcohol consumption produced a sharper increase in urge ratings than did the placebo. In addition, during smoking cue exposure, alcohol increased the likelihood of displaying facial expressions associated with positive affect. These findings suggest that alcohol consumption influences both the magnitude and the emotional valence of cigarette cravings.

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