Research News

New books from RIA will assist alcohol treatment providers

Businessman holding a shot glass of alcohol during work.

The new books were an outgrowth of several grants RIA researchers Paul R. Stasiewicz and Clara M. Bradizza received to study the connection between negative emotions and substance use, including alcohol use disorder.

By CATHY WILDE

Published January 26, 2018

“Nearly half of all clients in treatment for an alcohol use disorder report frequent heavy drinking in situations involving unpleasant emotions. However, there were no well-developed, empirically tested treatments to specifically address drinking in response to negative emotions.”
Paul R. Stasiewicz, senior research scientist
Research Institute on Addictions

Two new books from UB’s Research Institute on Addictions will offer treatment providers resources to help people with an alcohol use disorder manage their negative emotions and cravings for alcohol.

“Emotion Regulation Treatment of Alcohol Use Disorders” and its accompanying workbook for clients, “Managing Negative Emotions Without Drinking,” were written by RIA’s Paul R. Stasiewicz, senior research scientist; Clara M. Bradizza, senior research scientist; and Kim S. Slosman, clinical research project director.

Stasiewicz, a licensed clinical psychologist and director of RIA’s Addiction Treatment Services outpatient clinic, says the books were an outgrowth of several grants he and Bradizza received to study the connection between negative emotions and substance use, including alcohol use disorder. The grants were awarded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

“Nearly half of all clients in treatment for an alcohol use disorder report frequent heavy drinking in situations involving unpleasant emotions. However, there were no well-developed, empirically tested treatments to specifically address drinking in response to negative emotions,” Stasiewicz says. “These books should fill that critical gap.”

The book for treatment professionals, “Emotion Regulation Treatment of Alcohol Use Disorders,” provides step-by-step, detailed procedures for assessing and treating emotion-regulation difficulties in individuals diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder. The ERT program consists of 12 weekly sessions that combine cognitive-behavioral treatment with emotion-regulation strategies to help clients manage their negative emotions without turning to alcohol. The book includes session outlines, detailed session content with suggestions for therapist dialogue, and client assignments for between-session skill practice.

The accompanying client workbook, “Managing Negative Emotions Without Drinking,” presents scientifically tested strategies for managing emotions without alcohol, including mindfulness practices, direct experiencing of emotion, and cognitive and behavioral skills to manage high-risk drinking situations and prevent relapse to alcohol use. The book includes step-by-step exercises, user-friendly worksheets and in-session and between-session skill practice to help clients understand the role emotions play in harmful alcohol use and assist them in developing the skills needed to manage these emotions and cravings without alcohol.

The books are published by Routledge Press and can be purchased in hardback, paperback or e-book versions.