Smoking cessation methods among homeless youth in a Midwestern city.
Addict Behav Rep. 2020 Jun;11:100276
Authors: Glasser AM, Macisco JM, Miller LM, Garbsch EM, Wermert A, Nemeth JM
Introduction: Nearly three times as many homeless youth smoke cigarettes in the United States (US) compared to the general population of youth. Few studies have focused on how to help homeless youth quit smoking. As part of a series of studies to develop a smoking cessation intervention for homeless youth, this study aimed to describe methods used in past quit attempts by homeless youth.
Methods: Recruited from a drop-in center in the Midwestern US, the analytic sample was comprised of 32 unaccompanied homeless youth aged 14-24 who smoked combustible tobacco at some point in the past week. In-person qualitative interviews were conducted to understand prior quit attempt experiences of homeless youth.
Results: Twenty-two youth (69%) were willing to quit smoking in the next 30 days. Most previous quit attempts were unassisted (78%). Participants frequently reported engaging in distracting behaviors (e.g., video games) or thoughts (e.g., remaining positive). Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) was another popular method (38%), but with mostly negative reactions. While less common, vaping and use of cannabis to substitute cigarettes was reported in a notable faction of youth (28%), primarily 18-24 years of age.
Conclusions: Youth are primarily engaging in non-evidence-based strategies to quit smoking. Existing evidence-based treatments are often underutilized or not used according to instructions, and youth who do use evidence-based treatments do not find them useful. Future research should explore effective cessation treatment among homeless youth that can ideally be provided at shelters and drop-in centers.
Implications: Existing evidence-based treatments are underutilized by homeless youth in this study. Most homeless youth are willing to quit in the next month and are interested in trying behavioral counseling and monitored use of NRT. Drop-in centers may be an effective location from which to develop and offer targeted smoking cessation interventions for homeless youth.
PMID: 32426448 [PubMed]
Source: ncbi 2
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