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Title: The effects of brief mindfulness strategy on craving, affect and alcohol consumption
Author: Serfaty, S.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8498 2645
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2016
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Background: Recent theories of addiction emphasise craving and negative affect as the central mechanisms that underpin alcohol abuse. Mindfulness-based interventions have been suggested to increase people's ability to manage craving and negative affect, and thereby reduce the habitual reaction of drinking as a result of the unpleasant feelings. Aim: To examine the effect of brief mindfulness training on craving, affect and alcohol consumption, in comparison to brief relaxation training. Method: Sixty-eight participants were randomly allocated to brief mindfulness or relaxation training. Participants underwent cue-reactivity procedures before and after the training. Dependent variables included subjective and physiological measures of craving and affect, and alcohol consumption at 7-day follow-up. Results: Both mindfulness and relaxation reduced subjective cue-induced craving and arousal levels, as well as craving at follow-up. No effects were seen on pleasure during the cue-reactivity procedure. Mindfulness was also associated with a significant reduction in alcohol consumption at follow-up. The reduction in drinking in the mindfulness group was associated with acutely increased cue-induced physiological arousal. Conclusions: The results support the notion that both mindfulness and relaxation can reduce craving and arousal during cue-reactivity, but only mindfulness can reduce alcohol consumption at follow-up. This study also offers insights regarding physiological arousal, being a potential mechanism involved in the reduction in drinking.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available