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Novelty-seeking teens may be more easily influenced by tobacco advertisements

ed in Mid-Atlantic high schools to evaluate their tendencies for novelty-seeking, symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), lifetime cigarette smoking, and age of first cigarette. They found that teens with high degrees of symptoms for ADHD who had smoked cigarettes during their lifetimes also rated highest for novelty-seeking compared with other teens. The researchers say that teens with ADHD and novelty-seeking traits may be at a higher risk for smoking cigarettes than teens without these traits. This is likely because novelty-seeking and ADHD symptoms have common, basic behavioral elements such as poor self-control, attention dysfunction, and risktaking behavior, which may contribute to tobacco use.

WHAT IT MEANS: Novelty-seeking teens may be more vulnerable to cigarette smoking. Therefore, anti-tobacco campaigns that take this trait into consideration may be the most effective in preventing these teens from smoking.

Dr. Audrain-McGovern, Dr. Tercyak, and colleagues published the studies in the October 2003 issue of Health Communication and the December 2003 issue of Substance Use and Misuse. The studies were funded in part by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


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Contact: Michelle Person
301-443-6245
NIH/National Institute on Drug Abuse
19-Mar-2004


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