Differentiating stages of smoking intensity among adolescents: stage-specific psychological and social influences

J Consult Clin Psychol. 2002 Aug;70(4):998-1009. doi: 10.1037//0022-006x.70.4.998.


Researchers' understanding of the impact of sociocultural and psychological factors on the various stages of adolescent smoking uptake is limited. Using national data, the authors examined transitions across smoking stages among adolescents (N = 20,747) as a function of interpersonal, familial, and peer domains. Peer smoking was particularly influential on differentiating regular smoking, whereas alcohol use was most influential on earlier smoking. Although significant, depression and delinquency were attenuated in the context of other variables. Higher school grade was more likely to differentiate regular smoking from earlier smoking stages, whereas African American ethnicity and connectedness to school and family were protective of smoking initiation. Results lend support for an interactional approach to adolescent smoking, with implications for stage-matched prevention and intervention applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior / psychology
  • Depression / epidemiology
  • Family / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Male
  • Peer Group
  • Psychology
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Smoking / epidemiology*