Sociodemographic Evaluation of Tobacco Users in Turkey
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Turkish Green Crescent Counseling Center, İzmir, Turkey
Turkish Green Crescent Counseling Center, İstanbul, Turkey
Publication date: 2023-04-25
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2023;9(Supplement):A159
Tobacco products are known as addictive substances that are frequently used in the world and negatively affect public health. The most frequently consumed tobacco products are cigarettes, rolled tobacco products, pipes, cigars, hookah tobacco products, snuff and chewing tobacco. About 1.3 billion people worldwide smoke cigarettes. Every year 5 million people die due to smoking related diseases all around the world. It is considered that the number will reach more than 8 million by 2030 (1). The prevalence of smoking is reported as 21.2% in developed countries, 13.9% in transitional countries, and 7.2% in developing countries (3). According to the World Health Organization, 50% of men and 16% of women have smoking habits. In Turkey, it is stated that 14.8 million people (27.1%) use tobacco and tobacco products, and the frequency of tobacco use is 41.5% in men and 13.1% in women (2). When the relationship between tobacco use and sociodemographic characteristics was examined, it was reported that men were more addicted to nicotine than women, the applicants were between the ages of 35-44 and had a low education level (3,4). Considering the diseases and consequences, tobacco use is an important public health problem. Smoking characteristics vary according to gender, age group and other demographic characteristics. In order to increase the effectiveness of tobacco control programs, it is important to conduct studies describing the frequency of tobacco use and its components. For this purpose, our study aimed to examine the Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) tobacco counseling practices and to examine the sociodemographic characteristics of the people who applied to YEDAM to receive counseling for tobacco use.

Material and Methods:
YEDAM is a counseling center that provides free psychosocial support for individuals aged 12 and over with tobacco, substance, alcohol use disorders, gambling and internet disorders. People who call YEDAM call center are referred to the nearest center and their first sessions are planned. At the end of the evaluation session, risks and needs are determined and a session plan is developed with the client. Each center has psychologists, social workers, and secretary services. A client meets with both a psychologist and a social worker. In addition to these, clients participate in activities such as workshops, new life activities, group work in counseling centers. In line with the needs, people are directed to health institutions for medical support. The sociodemographic and clinical characteristics of each client are scanned in detail and recorded in a soft system (YEDAMSOFT). Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) tobacco use disorder counseling services have been organized since 2019. Tobacco use disorder counseling sessions are offered face-to-face, online, and by phone. The first session where risks and requirements are identified is the evaluation session. In the following sessions, information about situations that trigger smoking and coping with cravings, difficulties experienced after quitting, gains and relapses after quitting smoking are included. Phone calls are made with clients who have quit smoking for 1 year. Tobacco counseling sessions were given over the phone during the COVID-19 process. Tobacco Use Evaluation Form and Fagerström Nicotine Dependence Test (FTND) are filled with the client in the first session. Tobacco Use Evaluation Form consists of 39 questions that include individuals' sociodemographic information and tobacco use characteristics. The Fagerström Test for Nicotine Dependence (FTND) is a 6-item scale used to determine a measure of people's physical dependence on nicotine (5). Within the scope of Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) counseling, 35.439 tobacco addiction service sessions were held with 11.817 clients as of November 2022. In the following sessions, phone calls were conducted with 4281 clients. This study was conducted in line with the sociodemographic information obtained from the first interviews of the people who applied YEDAM to stop tobacco use .

In this study, in which the sociodemographic characteristics of Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM)'s applications for tobacco addiction counseling services were examined, the responses of 10.464 people to the Tobacco Use Evaluation Form included in the structured evaluation were evaluated. The total number of participants who filled out the questionnaires between 2022-2019 is 10.464. The mean age of the sample was 41.52±13.41 (range 13-82). 61% of the clients are male and 38.7% are female.When the marital status of the participants in the research is examined; 61.4% (n=6440) were married and 32.6% (n=32.6) were single.Considering the education of the people who applied to the counseling center, 1.9% (n=202) were literate; primary school graduates 18.9% (n=1983); secondary school graduate 15.8% (n=1659); high school graduate 27.7% (n=2965); 28.3% (n=2968) university graduates and 6.8% (n=708) continuing education.

This study is significant in revealing factors influencing smoking cessation and contiuning quit status in smokers who applied Green Crescent Counseling Center (YEDAM) for smoking cessation. The result from this study indicates a gender difference in tobacco prevalence with higher usage among males, especially high educated and married. Determination of sociodemographic evaluation influencing lasting smoking cessation rates may allow identify subjects who have risk of failure continue quit status and more importantly to individualize treatment strategies and follow-up.

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