Recent Stressful Events Linked With Smoking During Pregnancy
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About The Author

Alicia Allen, PhD, MPH began working in clinical research on substance use disorders in 2001 as an undergraduate student. This experience prompted her to obtain her masters in community health education, graduate certification in addiction studies and doctorate in social and behavioral epidemiology, all from the University of Minnesota. She also completed a fellowship at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the area of prenatal smoking. As an epidemiologist, Alicia is particularly interested in research study design and evaluating causality. She has conducted randomized clinical trials, controlled cross-over trials, and cross-sectional online surveys, as well as analyzed data from large epidemiological datasets. Her research interests are on the role of sex/gender and sex hormones within addictive behaviors, as well as healthy behavior changes. Currently she is exploring the role of hormonal contraceptives (e.g. birth control pills) in smoking cessation, as well as relapse to smoking, marijuana and opioids. Further work is investigating the protective effects of exercise on addictive behaviors. Alicia has received funding from the National Institutes of Health, ClearWay Minnesota, and University of Minnesota. She has published numerous manuscripts and is the editorial fellow for the Journal of Addiction Medicine.


Recent Stressful Events Linked With Smoking During Pregnancy

Stress and cigarette smoking seem to go hand-in-hand with each other as many people, especially women, report smoking to relieve stress. The perinatal period (including pregnancy and postpartum, the period after delivery) is also known to be a stressful time. We completed a study to examine the relationship between stressful life events (such as losing a job or moving) with cigarette smoking during the perinatal period. Using data from 15,136 women who completed the Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS)...

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