SHORT REPORT
Tobacco smoking and smoking cessation in times of COVID-19
 
More details
Hide details
1
Department of Health Promotion, Maastricht University/CAPHRI, Maastricht, The Netherlands
2
Centre for Health Protection, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), Bilthoven, The Netherlands
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Jan M. Elling   

Department of Health Promotion, Maastricht University/ CAPHRI, P.O. Box 616, Maastricht, 6200 MD, The Netherlands
Publication date: 2020-07-01
Submission date: 2020-05-07
Final revision date: 2020-05-22
Acceptance date: 2020-05-22
 
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2020;6(July):39
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Introduction:
Tobacco smoking may increase susceptibility to and severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This information may influence smoking cessation related beliefs in smokers.

Methods:
Online questionnaires were answered from 26 March to 3 April 2020 in the Netherlands by 340 smokers willing to quit smoking. Beliefs regarding (quitting) smoking and (consequences of) the coronavirus are described and associations with motivation to quit due to the coronavirus are reported.

Results:
While 67.7% of the smokers indicated that the coronavirus did not influence the number of cigarettes smoked per day, 18.5% smoked less cigarettes and 13.8% smoked more cigarettes per day due to the coronavirus. One-third of the smokers were more motivated to quit smoking due to the coronavirus. Motivation to quit due to the coronavirus was positively associated with beliefs about the coronavirus as a serious threat, being at high risk of catching the coronavirus and developing severe illness, smokers being at higher risk than non-smokers, quitting smoking to reduce complaints, the social environment endorsing quitting, and perceived stress.

Conclusions:
Subgroups of smokers may be receptive to smoking cessation advice due to COVID-19. Because of the measures taken to reduce the spread of the virus (e.g. stay at home as much as possible), personalized digital health interventions may be particularly suitable to reach smokers at home.

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
The authors have completed and submitted the ICMJE Form for Disclosure of Potential Conflicts of Interest and none was reported.
FUNDING
There was no source of funding for this research.
PROVENANCE AND PEER REVIEW
Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
 
REFERENCES (10)
1.
Kassel JD, Stroud LR, Paronis CA. Smoking, stress, and negative affect: correlation, causation, and context across stages of smoking. Psychol Bull. 2003;129(2):270-304. doi:10.1037/0033-2909.129.2.270
 
2.
Arcavi L, Benowitz NL. Cigarette smoking and infection. Arch Intern Med. 2004;164(20):2206-2216. doi:10.1001/archinte.164.20.2206
 
3.
Zhao Q, Meng M, Kumar R, et al. The impact of COPD and smoking history on the severity of Covid‐19: A systemic review and meta‐analysis. J Med Virol. 2020;1-7. doi:10.1002/jmv.25889
 
4.
Mehra MR, Desai SS, Kuy S, Henry TD, Patel AN. Cardiovascular disease, drug therapy, and mortality in Covid-19. N Engl J Med. 2020. doi:10.1056/NEJMoa2007621
 
5.
Lachlan KA, Spence PR, Nelson LD. Gender Differences in Negative Psychological Responses to Crisis News: The Case of the I-35W Collapse. Commun Res Rep. 2010;27(1):38-48. doi:10.1080/08824090903293601
 
6.
De Vries H. An integrated approach for understanding health behavior; the I-change model as an example. Psychol Behav Sci Int J. 2017;2(2):555-585. doi:10.19080/pbsij.2.2
 
7.
Crutzen R, Peters G-JY, Noijen J. Using Confidence Interval-Based Estimation of Relevance to Select Social-Cognitive Determinants for Behavior Change Interventions. Front Public Health. 2017;5(165). doi:10.3389/fpubh.2017.00165
 
8.
Peters G-JY. userfriendlyscience: Quantitative analysis made accessible. https://cran.r-project.org/web.... Published 25 September 2018. Accessed May 9, 2020.
 
9.
Heatherton TF, Kozlowski LT, Frecker RC, Fagerstrom KO. The Fagerstrom Test for Nicotine Dependence: a revision of the Fagerstrom Tolerance Questionnaire. British journal of addiction. 1991;86(9):1119-1127. doi:10.1111/j.1360-0443.1991.tb01879.x
 
10.
Cheung KL, Wijnen B, de Vries H. A review of the theoretical basis, effects, and cost effectiveness of online smoking cessation interventions in the Netherlands: A mixed-methods approach. J Med Internet Res. 2017;19(6):e230. doi:10.2196/jmir.7209
 
eISSN:2459-3087