Young adult smoker risk perceptions of traditional cigarettes and nontraditional tobacco products

Am J Health Behav. May-Jun 2006;30(3):302-12. doi: 10.5555/ajhb.2006.30.3.302.


Objective: To explore risk perceptions of traditional and nontraditional tobacco products (NTPs) among young adult smokers.

Methods: Focus groups with African Americans, non-Hispanic whites, and Hispanics. Risk ratings of light, regular, and menthol cigarettes and of NTPs and marijuana and cigarettes were compared.

Results: Participants tended to view light cigarettes as safer than regular cigarettes. Shisha and herbal products were rated as safer than traditional cigarettes, but there were differences in ratings by race/ethnicity, related to preferred cigarette variety.

Conclusions: Health communication messages about the use of cigarettes and NTPs should consider risk perceptions about the products and racial/ethnic differences.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • African Continental Ancestry Group / psychology
  • Attitude to Health*
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / psychology
  • Exercise / psychology
  • Focus Groups
  • Health Behavior*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Hispanic Americans / psychology
  • Humans
  • Marijuana Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Marijuana Smoking / epidemiology
  • Marijuana Smoking / ethnology
  • Marijuana Smoking / psychology
  • Risk Assessment
  • Smoking / adverse effects*
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Smoking / ethnology
  • Smoking / psychology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Tobacco / adverse effects*