Beliefs About the Harmfulness of Drug Use in Adults Who Use Different Drugs

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8 Scopus citations


College students in different categories of drug use (abstainers, low alcohol users, high alcohol users, cigarette users, marijuana users, and cocaine users) rated the harmfulness of several factors of drug use, including type of drug (cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana, and cocaine), frequency of use (weekly vs. daily), location of use (never at work vs. sometimes at work), socioeconomic status of the user (custodial worker vs. certified public accountant), and the pregnancy status of the user. Results showed that groups with greater drug experience had lowered concerns about harmfulness and more differentiated beliefs, not only for the drug or drugs that they were using but also for drugs that they were not using. Heavier use of alcohol was associated with lowered concern about the harmfulness of as-yet-untried drugs. These findings suggest that intervention may need to be aimed at changing systems of beliefs people have about drug use.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)52-65
Number of pages14
JournalPsychology of Addictive Behaviors
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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