Volume 24, Issue 1 (Spring 2022)                   Advances in Cognitive Sciences 2022, 24(1): 56-69 | Back to browse issues page

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Ebrahimpoor M, Padyab A, Ahmadi S, Sadeghi M. Predicting students' substance addiction: The role of worry, ruminant, and alexithymia. Advances in Cognitive Sciences. 2022; 24 (1) :56-69
URL: http://icssjournal.ir/article-1-1332-en.html
1- Master Student of General Psychology, Zarand Branch, Islamic Azad University, Zarand, Iran
2- Faculty Member of Farhangian University, Yasuj, Iran
3- Bachelors of Educational Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Farhangian University, Zanjan, Iran
4- Assistant Professor of Measurement, Department of Cognitive Psychology, Institute for Cognitive Science Studies, Tehran, Iran
Abstract:   (580 Views)
Adolescence is the peak period for the onset of addiction and is the developmental period when there is a risk of transition from substance use to substance abuse (2). Drug addiction causes neuropsychological dysfunction and leads to complications such as financial and legal problems, domestic violence, interpersonal conflict, and disruption of personal relationships (6). In addition to the cultural structure, addiction has a negative role in social, family, and community behaviors, so it is vital to pay attention to the role of an individual, psychological, family, and preventive social forces (8). One of the psychological factors of an individual is worry. The concern is a cognitive process in which individuals anticipate threatening events and outcomes and gradually becomes a strategy for detecting and dealing with impending threats (9). The findings of Babaei et al. showed a negative relationship between worry and susceptibility to addiction (11). Ruminants can also be persistent negative thoughts about personal worries and their possible causes and consequences (13). Ruminant means repetitive and passive mental engagement with a subject and causes a person to constantly pay attention to their negative feelings and characteristics and their causes and consequences (14). According to the results of Cheney and Sajedian's research, rumination has a causal effect on addiction (4). On the other hand, one of the psychological factors that is closely related to the readiness for addiction and has been considered in recent years, especially in the field of adolescents, is alexithymia (18), which is the inability to process emotional information and regulate emotions cognitively (19). Research has shown the role of alexithymia in addiction. For example, Hein et al. (23) and Arsellini (24) concluded that people with emotional malaise tend to become addicted because they have difficulty describing and recognizing emotions. The prevalence of substance abuse during adolescence in schools is significant on the one hand, and its negative consequences such as educational problems, physical-psychological diseases, and the possibility of suicide (25). On the other hand, it is necessary to conduct research that can coherently examine the role of anxiety, rumination, and emotional distress on substance addiction in the student community. Therefore, it is crucial to comprehensively study the mentioned variables in this field and identify the factors affecting the readiness of addiction in students. Therefore, the present study was conducted in line with the purpose of the role of worry, rumination, and alexithymia in predicting students’ substance addiction and seeks to answer the question of whether worry, rumination, and alexithymia play a role in predicting students' substance addiction?.
The present study was a descriptive-analytical correlation study. The statistical population of the present study included all-male high school students in Zarand, Kerman, 800 in the academic year 2019-2020. According to Morgan & Krejcie table, 260 people were selected by multi-stage cluster sampling method who volunteered to participate in the study. Students completed the Mir et al. (1990) worry Questionnaire, the Nolen Hooksma & Murrow (1991) rumination questionnaire, the Bagby et al. (1994) alexithymia, and the Farchad (2006) addiction tendency. Ethical considerations of the research included stating the principle of confidentiality, the confidentiality of personal information, freedom of the subjects to participate in the research, and informing them of the research result. SPSS software version 22 and Pearson correlation test, and multiple regression analysis were used to analyze the obtained data.
According to the results in this study, 92 people (35.38%) were 16 years old, 81 people (31.15%) were 17 years old, and 87 people (33.46%) were 18 years old. Also, 96 people (36.92%) were studying in the tenth grade, 84 people (32.30%) were studying in the eleventh grade and 80 people (30.76%) were studying in the twelfth grade. The results revealed that the correlation between rumination with positive and significant addiction tendency (r=0.622 and P<0.01), worry with positive and significant addiction tendency (r=0.597 and P<0.01). Alexithymia with a tendency to addiction was positive and significant (r=0.580 and P<0.01). Also, difficulty in recognizing emotions (P<0.05, β=0.128), difficulty in describing emotions (P<0.01, β=0.292), thinking with external orientation (P<0.01, β=0.289) General worry (P<0.01, β=0.536), lack of worry (P<0.01, β=-0.173), ruminant responses (P<0.01, β=0.359), misleading responses, and the senses (P<0.01, β=0.345) predict the tendency to addiction.
This study aimed to investigate the role of worry, rumination, and alexithymia in predicting students' substance addiction. The study's first finding showed a direct relationship between worry and the tendency to addiction, consequentlyincreasing anxiety and the increasing tendency to addiction. In the above explanation, it can be said that when people are exposed to anxiety, one of the negative strategies they use in these situations to regulate their emotions is the search for immediate pleasure to change their mood, which is more ineffective, especially in ambiguous and stressful situations. In this regard, Putra et al. (34) believe that marijuana users, who are exposed to anxiety or stress, use marijuana as a way to deal with negative moods because these people have a lot of annoying negative thoughts and people who are concerned about concentration. Furthermore, controls have less attention and therefore do not have focused, organized, and directional attention while performing their tasks. Therefore, in the same situations as other people, they are more prone to turn to drugs. Another study's findingsshowed a direct relationship between rumination and a tendency to addiction. According to the obtained findings, it can be deduced that, the tendency to addiction increases with increasing rumination. In achieving the above result, it can be said that when a person drowns in mental rumination, they feel that they have an uncontrollable state that is dangerous. In addition, negative beliefs about rumination arise and lead to depression, affectingemotional disorders and the persistence of emotional disorders such as substance abuse (37). The latest findings show a direct relationship between alexithymia and addiction tendency. In other words, it can be said that with increasing alexithymia tendency to addiction increases. In the above justification, it can be said that emotional distress, makes some people ready to be addicted to drugs as a failure to understand, process, and describe an emotion. Because people with emotional distress misinterpret the physical signs of emotional arousal, emotional helplessness through physical complaints show, and seek medical treatment for physical symptoms (22), they tend to use drugs.
One of the limitations of the present study is the limited results of the research to the research community and the self-reporting nature of the research tool, which should be used with caution in generalizing the results. Given the role of cognitive and emotional components in the tendency to addiction, it is suggested that educational interventions based on cognitive-behavioral and metacognitive approaches that focus on anxiety and rumination structures be addressed to reduce addiction. It is also suggested that the role of emotional variables such as emotional (cognitive-emotional) malaise and its effects on the tendency to addiction in public health be addressed in the workshops. Besides, in future research, the role of mediating variables such as failure and emotions in modeling structural equations should be investigated. Accordingly, it is suggested that the gender differences between these variables in the two sexes are investigated in future studies.
Ethical considerations
Compliance with ethical guidelines
Ethical considerations of the research included stating the principle of confidentiality, the confidentiality of personal information, the freedom of the subjects to participate in the research, and informing them of the research results.
Authors’ contribution
Meysam Sadeghi is the responsible author and data analyst; Mohamad Ebrahimpoor contributed to implementing questionnaires; Sadegh Ahmadi in data collection; Abdolkhalegh Padyab in the editing and finalizing the article.
This research was done at the personal expense of the authors.
The authors thank all those who have helped us in this research.
Conflictof interest
There is no conflict of interest between the authors.
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Type of Study: Research |
Received: 2021/09/9 | Accepted: 2021/12/6 | Published: 2021/05/10

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