Tobacco Addiction in Young Population and Factors Associated with Motivation to Quit; The Case of University of Vlora, Albania Students
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Department of Healthcare, Faculty of Public Health, University of Vlora, Vlora, Albania.
Clinic of Social and Family Medicine, Medical School, University of Crete, Greece
Department of Primary Care and Public Health, School of Public Health, Imperial College, London, UK
Institute of Public Health, American College of Greece, Athens, Greece
Publication date: 2018-06-13
Corresponding author
Enkeleint Aggelos Mechili   

Department of Healthcare, Faculty of Public Health, University of Vlora, Vlora, Albania.
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2018;4(Supplement):A17
Tobacco use in young population is a public health priority in Europe. Most tobacco users start smoking before the age of 25 years, while quitting early substantially reduces future disease risk. This study aimed to investigate tobacco use among university students in Albania and factors associated with their motivation to quit.

A cross-sectional study was conducted among students of all faculties and semesters of University of Vlora, Albania from May-July 2017. They were randomly selected and those who agreed to participate, completed part of the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS). A 10-point Likert scale was used to rate the importance and confidence to quit. SAS 9.1 was used for the analysis.

A total of 1360 student participated (27% males) with 18% (n=234) of them being daily smokers, smoking on average 13 (SD=13.3) cigarettes per day. 36.5% of smokers reported smoking their first cigarette within half an hour from the time they wake-up while 62.2% reported that they plan to quit smoking within the next 6 months. Although participants consider it important to quit smoking (mean=7.75, SD=2.87), they are not confident that they would be able to succeed (mean=5.09, SD=3.11). Doctor’s advice appears to be an important motivation to quit for the majority of smokers (73.0%) while 69.0% of them reported seeing health warnings on cigarette packages. However, only 25.0% were motivated by these messages/photos to quit smoking. In addition, 64.0% of smokers reported seeing information about the dangers of smoking cigarettes or that encourages quitting in newspapers/magazines and television in the last 30 days.

Results highlighted the importance of doctor’s advice in motivating students to quit and the necessity of integrating smoking cessation into daily clinical practice. Future research is needed to further investigate the factors which will support future interventions in Albanian and European level.

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