Objective: The goal of the study is to identify predictors of current cigarette smoking in adolescents within the school, home, and broader social environment.
Method: A two stage cluster sample design was used to select a representative sample of students from all middle and high schools in Cyprus in 2005-2006. Standardized Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) methodology was employed in administering the questionnaires and processing the results. Analyses were conducted using logistic regression with the outcome variable being current smoking.
Results: After adjusting for the effect of other predictors in the model, the strongest predictor of adolescent smoking was smoking peers. Having parents and grandparents that smoke, concerns about weight, access to pocket money, ease of buying cigarettes, owning an item with a cigarette logo on it, the belief that smokers are less attractive, and the false consensus effect all remain statistically significant predictors.
Conclusion: In designing smoking prevention programs, factors pertaining to the school, social and familial circle of adolescents as well as misconceptions on the link between smoking and physical appearance need to be considered. Such programs can act as empowering tools to complement legal measures which need to be firmly enforced and constantly revised to be effective.