The goal was to determine whether nicotine dependence levels remain consistent or change over three years. From a population-based sample of 4075 residents aged 18-64, drawn at random, data of 696 individuals was used, who had smoked cigarettes for 21 years on average. Nicotine dependence was assessed by the Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND) at baseline, and 30 and 36 months later. In addition, nicotine dependence and alcohol dependence were diagnosed according to the American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV). We found an increase in the FTND over 36 months. Subgroups were revealed with sustained high, increasing, decreasing, and sustained low rates of the FTND sum score. Male gender, age at onset of smoking 15 years or younger, DSM-IV nicotine dependence, and DSM-IV alcohol dependence at baseline predicted a sustained high FTND. We conclude that nicotine dependence is increasing even after many years of smoking in an adult population sample.
Research Areas and Centers
- Academic Focus: Center for Brain, Behavior and Metabolism (CBBM)