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Stress and Addiction editors Gottheil, Druley, Pashko and Weinstein

In support of their point, Young, Oei and Knight (1990) cite the fact that they could find only two studies which comprehensively attempted to control for tension reduction expectancies, and the findings of both supported a modified tension reduction hypothesis. The modification was that tension reduction was one but not the only reason for drinking behavior. Other determinants were said to be the interaction of pharmacology, expectancy, gender role and the situation in which the drinking occurs. Young, Oei and Knight (1990) note that the findings of these two studies are in accord with the most recent "metatheories" of alcohol use and abuse. Specifically, they state that contemporary thought on alcoholism emphasizes the complexity and multiplicity of alcohol's effects.

The "metatheories" of alcoholism that characterize the current perspective of behavioral scientists and their relationship to the TRH are more fully explicated and discussed in a review of literature presented by Pohorecky (1991). Of the Tension Reduction Hypothesis, Pohorecky states that research to date indicates that there is an increase in alcohol consumption with increases in anxiety but this effect only happens in certain types of groups and individuals.

For example, the elderly and women do not appear to drink as a means of reducing stress. However, findings repeatedly confirm that adolescents do attempt to reduce stress through alcohol consumption.

Pohorecky (1991) goes on to note that while the TRH can and does vary in validity from group to group, there is some evidence that when people are sorted solely into two groups, alcoholics versus non-alcoholics, the role of stress in alcohol ingestion is significantly stronger for the alcoholic group. Nonetheless, the different findings for different groups, according to Pohorecky, makes it clear that the Tension Reduction Hypothesis as originally postulated is no longer adequate.

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Stress and Addiction editors Gottheil, Druley, Pashko and Weinstein. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 16:48, July 22, 2017, from
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