Bidirectional relations of impulsive personality and alcohol use across three waves of data collection

Published: 24-04-2018| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/y7vrk8pr3f.1
Alison Kaiser,
Heather Davis,
Richard Milich,
Richard Charnigo,
Gregory Smith


Objective: To explore the bidirectional relations between alcohol use and three impulsive personality traits, to advance understanding of risk processes. Participants: 525 college students (mean age = 18.95 years) recruited in August 2008 and 2009 and followed up annually for three years. Methods: Personality and past/current substance use were assessed. Results: T2 sensation seeking mediated the predictive relationship between T1 and T3 alcohol use, and T2 alcohol use mediated the predictive relationship between T1 and T3 sensation seeking. In addition, T2 alcohol problems mediated the predictive relationship between T1 alcohol use and T3 negative urgency. Conclusions: Findings support a bidirectional relationship between sensation seeking and alcohol use, and drinking anticipates drinking problems, which predict increases in negative urgency. For some individuals, there appears to be an ongoing process of increased risk in the form of increases in both drinking and high-risk personality traits.