ATTITUDES OF WATERPIPE USE AMONG ADOLESCENTS IN THE REPUBLIC OF SERBIA - FINDINGS FROM HEALTH BEHAVIOR IN SCHOOL-AGED CHILDREN STUDY
Keywords:waterpipe, smoking, dependence, adolescents
Introduction: Smoking waterpipes has become very popular among youth around the world. Among the main reasons for this trend is the misperception that waterpipes are less harmful than cigarettes.
Aim: This paper aims to highlight motives, attitudes, and patterns of waterpipe use among adolescents in Serbia.
Methods: This study was a secondary analysis using data obtained from the study "Health behavior in school-aged children survey in the Republic of Serbia 2017/2018". An international research protocol was used to collect data on the health behavior of 15-year-old students. The questionnaire was designed for adolescents and consists of 74 questions, concerning health and waterpipe smoking habits. The survey was voluntary and anonymous.
Results: The study included 1605 students from 38 high schools, 798 (47.7%) males and 807 (52.3%) females. Waterpipe use is significantly related to smoking experience (β=0.271) and feeling nervous and depressed (β=0.150). Region (p=0.01), communication with friends about problems (p=0.01), and severe problems with family or friends (p=0.01) were all statistically significant in correlation to waterpipe smoking. Smoking habits (β=0.381) and urban regions (β=0.125) had the greatest impact on waterpipe smoking.
Conclusions: This study highlights waterpipe smoking is widespread among fifteen-year-old adolescents in Serbia. Cigarette smoking and anxiety signs like nervousness were risk factors for waterpipe use. Adolescents from Belgrade are considerably more frequently waterpipe smokers than all other regions.
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