Expressive writing intervention for young adult cigarette smokers

Steven C. Ames, Christi A. Patten, Kenneth P. Offord, James W. Pennebaker, Ivana T. Croghan, Diane M. Tri, Susanna R. Stevens, Richard D. Hurt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


This investigation examined the feasibility and magnitude of the effect of a stress management intervention involving expressive writing as an adjunct to brief office smoking cessation intervention for young adults. Participants aged 18-21 years were randomized to brief office intervention (N = 30) or expressive writing plus brief office intervention (N = 30). Biochemically confirmed 30-day point-prevalence tobacco abstinence, smoking reduction, perceived stress, negative affect, and treatment compliance were assessed at 4, 12, and 24 weeks post randomization. The expressive writing adjunct was not found to be effective. The 30-day smoking abstinence rates were 0% versus 0% (p = 1.000) at week 4, 20% versus 3% (p= 0.103) at week 12, and 20% versus 10% (p = 0.472) at week 24 for the brief office intervention only versus expressive writing plus brief office intervention groups, respectively. Participants stated they benefited most from the support and structure associated with the brief office intervention. Enthusiasm was lacking for the expressive writing treatment adjunct.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1555-1570
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2005


  • Cigarette smoking
  • Expressive writing
  • Nicotine dependence
  • Tobacco
  • Young adult

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology


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