Profiles of Behavior Change Constructs for Reducing Alcohol Use in Women at Risk of an Alcohol-Exposed Pregnancy


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Abstract

Using data from Project CHOICES, a randomized controlled trial to test an intervention to prevent alcohol-exposed pregnancies, this study examined process of change profiles composed of Transtheoretical Model of Change (TTM) constructs for alcohol. The primary purpose was to identify a profile of TTM variables associated with reduced drinking. Participants (n = 570) were women at risk of an alcohol-exposed pregnancy recruited from high risk settings. Profile analyses compared end-of-treatment (i.e., 3 months postintake) TTM construct mean profiles for women who reduced drinking to below NIAAA-defined risk levels1 (changers) with women who continued to drink at risk levels (nonchangers) at the 9-month follow-up. TTM construct profiles included experiential and behavioral processes of change, pros and cons for change, confidence to reduce drinking, and temptation to drink above risk levels. Results revealed a parallelism effect or interaction (p < .001) in the end-of-treatment TTM construct profiles for the changers versus the nonchangers at the 9-month follow-up. Changers reported greater pros (p < .001) and lower cons for change (p = .012), greater confidence (p = .030), lower temptation (p < .001) and greater use of the experiential (p < .001) and behavioral processes of change (p < .001). A larger percentage of the women from the CHOICES intervention were in the end-of-treatment profile of the changers (48%) compared with the control condition (39%; p = .042). Interventions can potentially be enhanced by clinicians’ understanding what successful change “looks like” for specific clients in terms of their process use, decisional balance, and self-efficacy, allowing for tailored interventions targeted to each client’s specific strengths and deficits.

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