Mark Litt, a professor at the UConn School of Dental Medicine and School of Medicine, studies health behaviors. He is an expert on addictive behaviors, including alcohol use disorder; cannabis use disorder; smoking and e-cigarette use; pain and pain management, such as TMJ pain; adherence to medical regimens and self-care.
Areas of Expertise (4)
Coping and Behavior Change
Yale University: Ph.D.
Yale University: M.S.
Claremont Men's College: B.A.
Media Appearances (3)
Recreational marijuana stokes concerns about youth substance abuse
Hartford Courant online
“If I had to choose, I’d probably say legalization should go forward,” said Mark Litt, a professor of behavioral sciences and community health at UConn Health. “It would help to regulate what is already an underground market. But the problem is, the market will expand exponentially.” “It will blow up,” he added...
Dental Phobia: Strategies To Help Patients Overcome Fears, Which Are Common
Hartford Courant online
Litt, a psychologist, teaches a course on understanding pain and anxiety and the effects of medication to second and third year dental students at the UConn School of Dentistry. There have been many advances in medications used to treat pain, Litt said, but these don't address the problem of overcoming a patients' fears, which can keep them away from the dentist all together. Dental students are taught to introduce anxious patients to the sources of their terror. They may let them hold a drill or the syringe that delivers a shot of Novocain. Patients, Litt suggests, need to share their fears so dentists can help address them.
The Dope On Cannabis in Connecticut: 5 things to know
New Haven Register online
“It’s like trying to do a study with heroin,” said Mark Litt, a professor of Behavioral Sciences, Community Health and Psychiatry at UConn Health. Litt runs a treatment program for people addicted to marijuana. Because marijuana is illegal at the federal level, it has been difficult to get funding to do clinical trials with the drug, let alone legally obtain it, though rules are relaxing. There have been studies showing its usefulness in relieving chronic pain, the spasms associated with multiple sclerosis, and vomiting and nausea caused by chemotherapy...
Research Grants (1)
Individualized Assessment and Treatment Program for TMD: Coping as a Mechanism
Coping as a Mechanism $499,138
2020 - 2025 Study to test highly tailored cognitive-behavioral treatment for temporomandibular/orofacial pain. Role: PI
Heightened olfactory dysfunction and oral irritation among chronic smokers and heightened propylthiouracil (PROP) bitterness among menthol smokersPhysiological Behavior
2019 Chronic cigarette smoking may influence chemosensory function, which in turn, may affect cigarette usage. Because menthol in cigarettes can attenuate nicotine bitterness, choice of menthol/nonmenthol cigarettes may be influenced by ability to perceive bitterness. We examined chemosensory function of chronic smokers, hypothesizing they would show altered function in comparison to non-smokers and by menthol cigarette preference
Modeling Associations between Chemosensation, Liking for Fats and Sweets, Dietary Behaviors and Body Mass Index in Chronic SmokersNutrients
2019 Chronic smokers have a greater risk for altered chemosensation, unhealthy dietary patterns, and excessive adiposity. In an observational study of chronic smokers, we modeled relationships between chemosensation, fat/carbohydrate liking, smoking-associated dietary behaviors, and body mass index (BMI).
E-cigarette palatability in smokers as a function of flavorings, nicotine content and propylthiouracil (PROP) taster phenotypeAddiction Behavior
2019 The popularity of E-cigarettes is due in part to their flavorings. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect on smokers' sensory perceptions and liking of various e-cigarette flavorings, and the degree to which those perceptions are influenced by nicotine level, sex, and PROP bitter taster phenotype.
What the World Needs Now: A Prescriptive Measure of Alcohol Outcomes Commentary on Witkiewitz et al.,Alcohol Clinical Experiment Research
Chronic Cigarette Smoking Associates Directly and Indirectly with Self-Reported Olfactory Alterations: Analysis of the 2011-2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination SurveyNicotine and Tobacco Research
2017 Population-based studies show inconsistent effects of cigarette smoking on olfactory function. We aimed to identify direct and indirect associations between measures of smoking exposure/nicotine dependence and altered olfaction in a nationally representative sample of adults.