Personality vulnerabilities to substance use in Early Phase Psychosis

Poster A121, Monday, October 8, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Essex Ballroom

Alissa Pencer1,2,3, Ivy-Lee Kehayes1, Annie Chinneck1, Emma Ells2, Erica Rudolph2, Phil Tibbo1,2, Sabina Abidi1,3, Sherry Stewart1,2; 1Dalhousie University, 2Nova Scotia Health Authority, 3IWK Health Centre

Cannabis and alcohol are significant substances of abuse for people with Early Psychosis (EP), with researchers showing 35% and 27% having a diagnosis of cannabis abuse or alcohol abuse, respectively (Van Mastrigt et al., 2004). A four-factor model of personality vulnerability (anxiety sensitivity, hopelessness, sensation seeking, impulsivity) has proven useful in predicting risk of alcohol/cannabis misuse in young people in the general population as well as in clinical samples of inpatient substance users (Schlauch et al., 2015), adolescents receiving outpatient treatment for a primary mental health disorder (Battista et al., 2012), and high-risk adolescents involved in the child welfare system (Hudson et al., 2015). The goal of this study is to determine if (and how) these personality traits predicted hazardous drinking/cannabis misuse in an EP population. Schizotypy has also been linked to both EP and substance use and was thus added as a fifth personality trait to investigate in this populaiton. We will present data on the effects of anxiety sensitivity, hopelessness, sensation seeking, impulsivity, and schizotypy on (1) risky alcohol use and (2) cannabis use, and discuss preliminary results. Given that the four-factor model of personality vulnerability has been used to develop a successful personality-targeted substance misuse intervention (Conrod et al. (2011), it is hoped that the results from the present study will provide support for the examination of a similar intervention for individuals with EP to help reduce their risky substance misuse.

Topic Area: Substance Use

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