College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

11-1993

Keywords

Psychological Adaptation, Alcoholism, Cocaine, Public Opinion, Self Care, Smoking, Smoking Cessation, Social Problems

Publication Title

Journal of Studies on Alcohol

ISSN

0096-882X

Volume

54

Issue/No.

6

Abstract

Visitors (N = 579) to a science center read selected scenarios and evaluated the most likely outcome for a hypothetical substance abuser. Respondents were randomly assigned to one of six scenario conditions: a person with one of three different substance abuse problems (alcohol, tobacco, or cocaine) was crossed with two labels reflecting high or low substance dependence. Results indicated that: (1) cigarettes were viewed as a less serious substance abuse problem than were alcohol or cocaine (a person who smoked cigarettes was rated as more likely to recover from his problem, self-change was regarded as more appropriate and less stigma was associated with smoking than with the other two drugs); (2) non-abstinent recoveries of all types were greeted with skepticism; and (3) recovery was rated as more likely to occur from treatment than from self-change.

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