Positive hookah expectations, attitudes, and beliefs among young adult users
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
Hookah smoking has emerged as a new form of tobacco use in the U.S., particularly among adolescents and young adults. Previous quantitative research with hookah users has found that this behavior is generally perceived as socially acceptable and looks cool. However, no known studies have qualitatively assessed hookah users' attitudes and beliefs regarding this behavior. Therefore, we conducted four focus groups (N=6-9 each) comprised of young adults aged 18-24 (total N=30). Using outcome expectancy theory, we posed the question Hookah smoking is _______? to elicit words that users associate with hookah. More than 75% of responses were a positive experience from hookah use. In addition to reporting the social nature of hookah smoking and the acceptability among their peers, participants frequently reported feeling light headed, dizzy, or a head high, as positive, desirable physical effects. Some participants reported modifying their smoking behaviors in order to obtain a more rapid head high, potentially leading to a desirable feeling of their whole body going limp. Respondents also reported the creative ways in which they used hookah, from doing tricks with the smoke to creating new mixes of flavors with both the tobacco and the fluid (milk, energy drinks, alcohol, etc.) used. While surveys have assessed users' knowledge and attitudes towards hookah, many involved negative words such as harm or addiction and neglected potential positive aspects of hookah use. For effective prevention and intervention programs, it is imperative to understand the positive attitudes and beliefs associated with hookah use.
Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences
Describe why young adults use hookah and their positive associations with this behavior
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the principal investigator on this federally funded grant and have participated in the focus group data collection. I have studied adolescent and young adult substance use, including tobacco, for more than 10 years.
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.