4 years ago

Depression and Substance Use: Towards the Development of an Emotion Regulation Model of Stigma Coping

John E. Pachankis, Katie Wang, Charles L. Burton

The comorbidity between depression and substance use problems is well-documented, yet little research has investigated how stigma associated with one's depression might relate to alcohol and drug use. The current study examined the association between depression-related stigma and substance use coping and considered the role of emotion dysregulation (i.e., difficulty in monitoring, evaluating, and modulating one's emotional reactions) as a mechanism underlying this association. A sample of individuals who self-identified as having current or remitted depression (N = 218) completed self-report measures of depression-related stigma, emotion dysregulation, and tendency to rely on alcohol or drugs to cope with psychological distress. Depression-related stigma was positively associated with emotion dysregulation, which was in turn associated with a greater tendency to engage in substance use coping. These findings provide initial support for the role of stigma as a contributor to maladaptive coping responses, such as substance use, among people living with depression. Further, they underscored the potential utility of targeting emotion dysregulation in stigma coping and substance abuse prevention intervention efforts.

Publisher URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10826084.2017.1391011

DOI: 10.1080/10826084.2017.1391011

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