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Determinants of Light and Intermittent Smoking in the United States: Results from Three Pooled National Health Surveys.


ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:Light and/or intermittent smokers have been the fastest growing segment of cigarette smokers in the United States over the past two decades. Defining their behavioral characteristics is a critical public health priority. METHODS:Our sample included 78,229 U.S. adults from three pooled contemporary population-based surveys: the 2012 NHIS, 2012 NSDUH, and 2011-2012 NHANES. We classified current smokers into four categories (light and intermittent [LITS], light-daily, heavier-intermittent, and heavier-daily) and assessed smoking behaviors, illicit drug use, and mental health indicators using weighted analyses. RESULTS:Analyses associated smoking categories with nicotine dependence, age of smoking initiation, race/ethnicity, and other demographic and behavioral factors. Compared with heavier-daily smokers, smokers who were LITS were most likely to have mild or no nicotine dependence (weighted odds ratio [OR], 16.92; 95% confidence interval [CI], 13.10-21.85), to start smoking cigarettes regularly after age 21 (OR, 3.42; 95% CI, 2.84-4.12), and to be Hispanic (OR, 5.38; 95% CI, 4.38-6.61). Additional significant results were found for other categories of smokers. CONCLUSIONS:Based on pooled data from three large national surveys, light and/or intermittent smokers differed in smoking, drug use, and mental health behaviors from heavier-daily, former, and never smokers. Notable differences by level of smoking frequency and intensity were observed for nicotine dependence, age of smoking initiation, and race/ethnicity. IMPACT:Our results may help focus preventive measures and policies for the growing number of light and/or intermittent smokers in the United States because smoking patterns vary by behavioral and socioeconomic factors. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev; 26(2); 228-39. ©2016 AACR.

SUBMITTER: Reyes-Guzman CM 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5296280 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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