ERIC Number: EJ1164816
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
ST Product Characteristics and Relationships with Perceptions and Behaviors among Rural Adolescent Males: A Qualitative Study
Couch, Elizabeth T.; Darius, Ellen F.; Walsh, Margaret M.; Chaffee, Benjamin W.
Health Education Research, v32 n6 p537-545 Dec 2017
Although smoking declines in the United States, the prevalence of male adolescent smokeless tobacco (ST; moist snuff and chewing tobacco) use remains unchanged. ST product characteristics, such as flavoring, packaging, and branding, could influence adolescents' ST initiation and continued use. This qualitative study examines the potential role of product characteristics in shaping ST-related perceptions and behaviors among rural adolescent males. Semi-structured individual interviews were conducted at three California rural high schools. ST users were asked about their experiences and perceptions related to product characteristics. Interviews were transcribed, coded, and analyzed using a general inductive approach. Participants associated flavored ST with appealing non-tobacco products, such as chewing gum and alcohol. Availability of different varieties and flavors stimulated interest and curiosity in sampling or switching between ST products. Time-limited promotional flavors and packaging also enhanced product appeal. Adolescent ST users preferred certain brands based on perceived brand features and perceived nicotine content, associating higher-strength brands as better suited for experienced ST users. Brand preferences frequently reflected perceived ST brand popularity within peer groups. Based on these observations, potential ST regulation and health education campaigns to address misconceptions about ST characteristics could influence adolescents' ST-related perceptions and reduce ST use among this vulnerable population.
Descriptors: Rural Youth, Adolescents, Qualitative Research, Adolescent Attitudes, Males, Smoking, Semi Structured Interviews, Addictive Behavior, High School Students, Health Education, Rural Schools, Advertising, Merchandise Information, Incidence
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A