Impulsivity and High Risk Behaviour among Male and Female Alcohol Dependent Patients

Author(s): Anupama K and Pawan kumar Reddy CM

Background: Impulsivity as a personality trait is associated with high risk behaviour among alcohol dependents but the relationship between these two variables has been largely overlooked in addressing Alcohol Dependence Syndrome

Objectives: To study the relationship between impulsivity and High Risk Behaviour among alcohol dependent patients

Methods: The study was conducted in a clinical setting using an explorative study design and non-probability sampling method on 178 male and 22 female alcohol dependent patients in 2011. The tools used prior to sample selection include; ICD-10, CIWA-AD, MMSE, SOADQ, and the HRBQ and BIS were used to assess high risk behaviour and impulsivity respectively.

Results and Discussion: Significant association was found between all the three variables i.e., High impulsivity (p-value=0.000), Low impulsivity (P-vale=0.000), Severity of alcohol dependence (p-value=0.000) and High risk behavior (Road Traffic accidents, Crime and violence, Self-injurious behavior, Risky sexual behavior) in the sample. In addition, significant difference between the groups of Severity of alcohol dependence questionnaire (SADQ) scores and high impulsivity (p-value=0.049) was observed. Patients scoring high on personality constructs such as impulsivity were particularly vulnerable to indulge in high risk behaviour.

Conclusion: The findings of the present study allows to conclude that there was significant influence of gender (-3.260**) and education (-2.350*) on High Risk Behaviour of the sample and impulsivity as a personality construct is significantly associated with the high risk behaviour and severity of alcohol dependence. These results also indicate a strong need for intervention to address the personality traits related to severity of alcohol dependence to control relapses in treatment of Alcohol Dependence.

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