The association of affective temperaments with smoking initiation and maintenance in adult primary care patients

Ajandek Eory, Sandor Rozsa, Xenia Gonda, Peter Dome, Peter Torzsa, Tatevik Simavorian, Konstantinos N. Fountoulakis, Maurizio Pompili, Gianluca Serafini, Knarig K. Akiskal, Hagop S. Akiskal, Zoltan Rihmer, Laszlo Kalabay

Research output: Article

6 Citations (Scopus)


Background Smoking behaviour and its course is influenced by personality factors. Affective temperaments could allow a more specific framework of the role trait affectivity plays in this seriously harmful health-behaviour. The aim of our study was to investigate if such an association exists in an ageing population with a special emphasis on gender differences. Methods 459 primary care patients completed the TEMPS-A, Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Hamilton Anxiety Rating Scale (HAM-A). Subjects were characterized according to their smoking behaviour as current, former or never smokers. Univariate analysis ANOVA and logistic regression were performed to analyse differences in the three smoking subgroups to predict smoking initiation and maintenance. Results Current smokers were younger and less educated than former or never smokers. Males were more likely to try tobacco during their lifetime and were more successful in cessation. Depressive, cyclothymic and irritable temperament scores showed significant differences between the three smoking subgroups. Irritable temperament was a predictor of smoking initiation in females whereas depressive temperament predicted smoking maintenance in males with a small, opposite effect of HAM-A scores independent of age, education, lifetime depression and BDI scores. Whereas smoking initiation was exclusively predicted by a higher BDI score in males, smoking maintenance was predicted by younger age and lower education in females. Limitations The cross-sectional nature of the study design may lead to selective survival bias and hinder drawing causal relationships. Conclusions Affective temperaments contribute to smoking initiation and maintenance independently of age, education, and depression. The significant contribution of depressive temperament in males and irritable temperament in females may highlight the role of gender-discordant temperaments in vulnerable subgroups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-402
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of affective disorders
Publication statusPublished - febr. 1 2015


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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