Direct Observations of Parenting and Real-Time Negative Affect Among Adolescent Smokers and Nonsmokers

Melanie J. Richmond, Robin J. Mermelstein, Lauren S. Wakschlag

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

This longitudinal study examined how observations of parental general communication style and control with their adolescents predicted changes in negative affect over time for adolescent smokers and nonsmokers. Participants were 9th- and 10th-grade adolescents (N = 111; 56.8% female) who had all experimented with cigarettes and were thus at risk for continued smoking and escalation; 36% of these adolescents (n = 40) had smoked in the past month at baseline and were considered smokers in the present analyses. Adolescents participated separately with mothers and fathers in observed parent-adolescent problem-solving discussions to assess parenting at baseline. Adolescent negative affect was assessed at baseline, 6 months, and 24 months via ecological momentary assessment. Among both smoking and nonsmoking adolescents, escalating negative affect significantly increased risk for future smoking. Higher quality maternal and paternal communication predicted a decline in negative affect over 1.5 years for adolescent smokers but was not related to negative affect for nonsmokers. Controlling maternal, but not paternal, parenting predicted escalation in negative affect for all adolescents. Findings suggest that reducing negative affect among experimenting youth can reduce risk for smoking escalation. Therefore, family-based prevention efforts for adolescent smoking escalation might consider parental general communication style and control as intervention targets. However, adolescent smoking status and parent gender may moderate these effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)617-628
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Volume42
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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