Psychological Factors Influencing Initiation and Cessation of Tobacco Habit among Indian population-A Cross Sectional Study
Author(s): Ceena Denny, Jeena Priya, Bastian Thattil, Ravikiran Ongole,Junaid Ahmed, Almas Binnal, Srikant Natarajan
Background: Tobacco abuse is one of the most harmful habits practiced by the population worldwide.
Aims: To assess various factors leading to initiation and discontinuation of tobacco and to understand different psychological aspects behind its initiation.
Method: A cross sectional study was conducted among 300 past and current tobacco users visiting Oral Medicine Clinics of Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Mangalore, India. A self-administered questionnaire was used to gather details related to age of initiation of tobacco usage; frequency, duration and pattern of consumption; their knowledge towards tobacco hazards; and, reasons for initiation and discontinuation of the same.
Results: Respondents were divided into three age groups (15-30, 31-50, and >51 years). Majority of 92.7%, 95.1% and 92.3% in Group I, II and III respectively were aware of harmful effects of tobacco. Relief from tension was the main reason for initiation of tobacco usage. A total of 29 (10.7%) had discontinued their habits and the main reason was advice from their family and friends.
Conclusion: Tobacco abuse is on the rise despite the high awareness towards its hazards, indicating the involvement of other factors such as psychological dependency, peer and cultural influences, etc. Results of the study highlight the importance of targeting the family members of tobacco users in helping quit tobacco by its users. Further avenues to be explored are various modes of stress management among users of tobacco which might help in the prevention and cessation of tobacco usage.