The proportion of daily smokers in the adult Norwegian population is gradually decreasing. We have examined changes in smoking among secondary school students (1975 - 2005) and changes in snus use (smokeless tobacco) from 1985 through 2005.
The data stem from a series of nationwide surveys carried out by the Norwegian Directorate of Health every fifth year since 1975. The present analyses are based on samples of students born on the 6 th day of any month (n = 32669) in the period 1975 - 2005.
The proportion of daily smokers among 15-year-olds was highest in 1975 (22.6 % among males and 28.4 % among females) and lowest in 2005 (8.5 % among males and 9.5 % among females). There were periods with no decrease during the 1980s and 1990s, and even an increase in smoking. From 2000 to 2005, the proportion of smokers decreased markedly irrespective of how smoking is defined - in all three grades - and for both sexes. The proportion of 15-year-old boys who used snus daily dropped markedly from 1985 to 1990, and increased steadily thereafter (7.9 % in 2005).
The marked decrease in smoking among secondary school students from 2000 to 2005 may result in that fewer of these students will ever start smoking.
"Among adolescents in the US and elsewhere, smoking rates have declined [1,2]. However, despite a general decline over cohorts and the well-documented and well-disseminated fact that smoking has severe health consequences, many adolescents still start smoking. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Studies on adolescent smoking indicate that the smoking behaviours of their parents, siblings and friends are significant micro-level predictors. Parents' socioeconomic status (SES) is an important macro-level predictor. We examined the longitudinal relationships between these predictors and the initiation and development of adolescents' smoking behaviour in Norway.
We employed data from The Norwegian Longitudinal Health Behaviour Study (NLHB), in which participants were followed from the age of 13 to 30. We analysed data from the first 5 waves, covering the age span from 13 to 18, with latent curve modeling (LCM).
Smoking rates increased from 3% to 31% from age 13 to age 18. Participants' smoking was strongly associated with their best friends' smoking. Parental SES, parents' smoking and older siblings' smoking predicted adolescents' initial level of smoking. Furthermore, the same variables predicted the development of smoking behaviour from age 13 to 18. Parents' and siblings' smoking behaviours acted as mediators of parents' SES on the smoking habits of adolescents.
Parents' SES was significantly associated, directly and indirectly, with both smoking initiation and development. Parental and older siblings' smoking behaviours were positively associated with both initiation and development of smoking behaviour in adolescents. There were no significant gender differences in these associations.
BMC Public Health 12/2011; 11(1):911. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-11-911 · 2.26 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The public receives mixed messages about the harmfulness of alternative tobacco products to cigarettes, and little is known about what present and potential users of these products actually think about their relative harmfulness.
In a nationally representative survey of 2415 Norwegian adolescents aged 16-20 years, participants were asked to rate the harmfulness of various available tobacco products and their own use of snus and cigarettes. A study was undertaken to examine how adolescents rate the relative harm of tobacco products in general, and snus and cigarettes in particular, and how this varies with age, gender and their own use of snus and smoking.
Cigarettes were generally rated as more harmful than snus, but 41% still rated snus as equally or more harmful than cigarettes. Male participants reported lower harm from all products than females. Being a snus user was associated with lower ratings of harm for snus, but being a smoker was not associated with reporting of harm for cigarettes.
Compared with the current scientific consensus, the participants overrated the harmfulness of snus and, as such, our results suggest a potential for changing peoples' perceptions of the relative health risks of various tobacco products. To the extent that health information affects consumption, accurate information on relative risks may lead more people to choose snus over cigarettes.
Tobacco control 11/2008; 17(6):422-5. DOI:10.1136/tc.2008.026997 · 5.93 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Schools are an important arena for smoking prevention. In many countries, smoking rates have been reduced among adolescents, but the use of smokeless tobacco is on the rise in some of these countries. We aimed to study the associations between schools' restrictions on smoking and snus and on the use of these tobacco products among students in upper secondary school. We employed data from a national representative study of 1444 Norwegian students, aged 16-20 years. Respondents were asked about their schools' restrictions on snus and smoking and own use of these products. We examined associations between restrictions and the use, controlling for age, gender, type of school and regional differences. We found clear consistent associations between schools' restrictions on tobacco use and less use of these products. More explicit pervasive restrictions were strongly associated with the prevalence of use. This first study on the associations between schools' restrictions on snus and the prevalence of snus use corroborate what has been found in many studies on smoking restrictions and smoking. Strict school tobacco policies may be an important tool if health authorities are interested in implementing measures to limit or reduce snus use among adolescents.
Health Education Research 04/2010; 25(5):748-56. DOI:10.1093/her/cyq023 · 1.66 Impact Factor
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