Purpose: Studies of adolescent smoking have concentrated on factors that are associated with smoking (vulnerability), but have tended not to examine whether these factors also describe adolescents who have been at risk of becoming smokers but have not succumbed, for example, to the social pressure of having friends who smoke (resilience).
Methods: Results from a longitudinal study were used to examine the predictors of resilience to social influence from among a selected group of factors associated with adolescent smoking.
Results: Among these with no recent history of smoking, the predictor variables for vulnerability and resilience were different across age. However, for adolescents who had a recent history of smoking there were no predictors of continued smoking or of stopping, apart from whether or not a friend smoked.
Conclusions: Resilience factors against smoking show the characteristics of those who have successfully resisted the social influence to smoke. Identification of further predictors of resilience would help in the development of intervention programs and should include a reexamination of factors not usually correlated with smoking status.