Evidence has shown that smoking is a self-regulatory strategy to relieve negative affect and that metacognitions about smoking may play a role in addictive behaviors. Therefore, the present research was designed to examine the direct and indirect roles of emotion dysregulation and negative affect in predicting urge to smoke and nicotine dependence via metacognitions about smoking. In a cross-sectional study, 450 nicotine-dependent men completed measures of urge to smoke, nicotine dependence, metacognitions about smoking, negative affect, and emotion dysregulation. The results showed that both emotion dysregulation and negative affect had indirect effects on urge to smoke via positive metacognitions about smoking as well as on nicotine dependence via negative metacognitions about smoking. The findings suggest that metacognitions about smoking have different roles in different patterns of nicotine use so that positive and negative metacognitions have important roles respectively in urge to smoke and nicotine dependence in smokers with high emotion dysregulation and negative affect. This study also adds to the literature on the metacognitive theoretical framework of addictive behaviors supporting the use of Metacognitive Therapy interventions in smoking cessation.
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