218743 Social and Contextual Factors Influencing Tobacco Use in African Americans

Tuesday, November 9, 2010 : 10:47 AM - 11:04 AM

Pamela R. Jones, PhD, RN, MPH , Department of Community-Based Health, College of Nursing, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Marlene Z. Cohen, RN, PhD , College of Nursing, University of Nebraska, Omaha, NE
Helen E. McIlvain, PhD , Department of Family Medicine, College of Medicine, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Mohammad Siahpush, PhD , Health Promotion, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Alexis Scott , College of Nursing, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE
Kingsley Okafor , College of Medicine, UNMC, Omaha, NE
Background and aim: Significant disparities exist in the onset of smoking in ethnic minorities. African Americans become regular smokers as young adults, unlike Whites who tend to become regular smokers in adolescence. The later age of becoming a regular smoker and the disproportionate tobacco-related disease burden indicates a need for population-based tobacco control interventions that extend through young adulthood, particularly among African Americans. Despite the knowledge that African Americans start smoking regularly as adults, there is limited information that examines factors that may lead young adults to start smoking later in life. The aim of this study was to understand the attitudes, beliefs, and other influences young adult African Americans decision to start smoking. Method: This study used individual interviews and focus groups with African Americans, ages 19-25. Interviews were audio-taped and transcribed. Data was analyzed using the grounded theory approach of constant comparison. Results: Preliminary results show that participants associated tobacco use with transitioning into adulthood, using marijuana, and personal and professional success. Additionally, participants' decisions about smoking were impacted by parental advice about tobacco use, perceptions regarding levels of smoking in social network, stress, and alternative coping skills. Conclusion: The study results can inform practitioners, researchers, and policy makers of the critical factors to consider when developing a tobacco prevention and/or cessation program for young adult minorities.

Learning Areas:
Program planning
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Describe how young adult minorities conceptualize tobacco use. Discuss the social and contextual factors that influence tobacco use in young adult minorities.

Keywords: Tobacco Control, African American

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I conduct research on tobacco-related health disparities.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.