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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2016  |  Volume : 4  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 146-150

What encourages Saudis to quit smoking?


1 College of Medicine, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Internal Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Clinical Research Institute, American University of Beirut Medical Center, Beirut, Lebanon
3 Department of Basic Sciences, College of Science and Health Professions, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University for Health Sciences, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Correspondence Address:
Hana M. A. Fakhoury
Department of Basic Sciences, College of Science and Health Professions, King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University, Riyadh
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
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DOI: 10.4103/1658-600X.179825

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Context: Despite the noticeable increase in public awareness among Saudis, Saudi Arabia is still ranked as the fourth largest tobacco importer in the world. A very limited number of studies have studied ex-smokers in the Saudi population. Aims: In this study, we aimed to analyse the socio-demographic characteristics of ex-smokers in an attempt to determine who is most likely to quit smoking among Saudis. Settings and Design: This study is an extension to a previous cross-sectional study, which was conducted in Saudi Arabia during the period between April and May 2013. Subjects and Methods: A new questionnaire was developed and manually distributed electronically through different popular Twitter accounts. The questionnaire was written in Arabic and included information about socio-economic factors and smoking history. Results: The results of 2057 questionnaires showed that 808 (39%) were current smokers, 460 (22%) were ex-smokers while the remaining 808 (39 %) never smoked. The majority of ex-smokers (57%) decided to quit because of religious and social reasons. In addition, health reasons were the drive for 40% of the quitters while only 2.7% of the quitters made the decision because of financial reasons. In the multivariate analysis for reasons to stop smoking, we found that quitting was not influenced by gender, income or age at the onset of smoking. Conclusions: We have looked at smoking cessation from a broader perspective, analysing different categories of the Saudi population. Social, religious and health reasons must be emphasised by counsellors assisting Saudi smokers to quit.


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