Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment

, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 47-57

First online:

Distress Tolerance Scale: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis Among Daily Cigarette Smokers

  • Teresa M. LeyroAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Vermont
  • , Amit BernsteinAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Haifa
  • , Anka A. VujanovicAffiliated withNational Center for PTSD, Behavioral Science Division, VA Boston Healthcare SystemDivision of Psychiatry, Boston University School of Medicine
  • , Alison C. McLeishAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology, University of Cincinnati
  • , Michael J. ZvolenskyAffiliated withAnxiety and Health Research Laboratory, Department of Psychology, University of Vermont Email author 

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The present investigation evaluated the factor structure of the Distress Tolerance Scale (DTS; Simons and Gaher 2005) among a sample of 173 (54.9% males) daily cigarette smokers (M = 16.64 cigarettes per day, SD = 7.83). Comparison of a single higher-order model and a hierarchical multidimensional model was conducted using confirmatory factor analyses (CFA). In addition, evaluation of the internal consistency and convergent and discriminant validity of the better-fitting model was completed. CFA of the DTS indicated a single second-order factor of distress tolerance, and four lower-order factors including Tolerance, Appraisal, Absorption, and Regulation; each factor demonstrated acceptable levels of internal consistency. In addition, the DTS displayed good convergent and discriminant validity with theoretically relevant smoking and affect variables. Results are discussed in terms of explicating the latent structure of distress tolerance, as measured by the DTS, within the context of smoking research.


Distress tolerance Distress intolerance Emotion regulation Cigarette smokers Nicotine Substance use Confirmatory factor analysis