Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health
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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 1724-1728

Emotion regulation difficulties in drug abusers

1 Health Promotion Research Centre, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran
2 Children and Adolescents' Health Research Center, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran
3 Iranshahr University of Medical Sciences, Iranshahr, Iran
4 Department of Medicine, Zahedan University of Medical Sciences, Zahedan, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Mohsen Hossein Bor
Iranshahr University of Medical Sciences, Iranshahr
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ATMPH.ATMPH_617_17

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Introduction: Various factors, including personality characteristics, are involved in addiction and perpetuation of it. Emotions and the way they are felt and responded are a part of personality that may play a role in showing tendency to drug abuse and perpetuation of this behavior. The present study aimed at investigating emotional difficulties in drug addicts. Methodology: The statistical population of this cross-sectional study included 268 individuals, of which 166 individuals were drug dependence who visited medical centers in Zahedan and Iranshahr. The remaining 120 individuals had no addiction history and were assessed with difficulty in emotion regulation scale. Sample selection was done through convenience sampling technique. Findings: Results suggested that drug-dependent people had significant difference from nondependent individuals in five aspects, namely nonacceptance of emotional responses, difficulty engaging in goal-directed behaviors, difficulty in impulse control, limited access to emotion regulation strategies, and lack of emotional clarity(P<0.01). These two groups were not different only in one aspect, namely the lack of emotional awareness(P>0.05). Evaluation of emotional difficulties and gender showed a difference between men and women in nonacceptance of emotional responses, difficulty in impulse control, limited access to emotion regulation strategies(P<0.01), and lack of emotional clarity(P<0.05). There was no between-groups difference in difficulties engaging in goal-directed behaviors and the lack of emotional awareness. Conclusion: Although emotional difficulties are not the main factor in the onset and perpetuation of drug abuse, abusers suffer from them. Given the research results and those of other studies, the importance of emotion in etiology, prevention, and treatment of addiction can be highlighted.

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