Canadian Journal of Public Health

, Volume 99, Issue 5, pp 418–422 | Cite as

Emergent Cigarette Smoking, Correlations with Depression and Interest in Cessation among Aboriginal Adolescents in British Columbia

  • Peter J. HutchinsonEmail author
  • Chris G. Richardson
  • Joan L. Bottorff



To describe smoking rates, age of initiation, and smoking cessation efforts among Aboriginal adolescent girls and boys in British Columbia, and examine the relationships between cigarette smoking and socio-demographic characteristics, depression and domains of life satisfaction.


A secondary analysis was conducted of data collected from the British Columbia Youth Survey on Smoking and Health II measuring demographic and social factors, previous smoking experience, life satisfaction and depression. Data were analyzed from respondents who self-identified as Aboriginal, and by gender. Logistic regression models were used to identify risk factors for current cigarette smoking.


The average age of respondents was 15 years (SD=1.7) and 51% were female. Current cigarette smoking was 31%, with a mean age of initiation to smoking of 11 years (SD=3). On average, smokers consumed 3.8 cigarettes each day (SD=5.7), with most smokers (78%) reporting that they had seriously thought about quitting. More girls smoked than boys but girls smoked fewer cigarettes. As depression scores (CESD) increased, so did smoking among respondents; and as life satisfaction decreased, smoking increased. Having a best friend who smokes was the most powerful predictor of current smoking, increasing the odds of being a smoker by a factor of 5.9.


Although rates of tobacco smoking among respondents are high, there is considerable interest in cessation among current smokers. Recognizing that these youth are motivated to quit smoking, cessation programs may increase success by addressing peer smoking in prevention and cessation initiatives and including culturally appropriate strategies to promote mental health.

Key words

Indians North American adolescent smoking cross-sectional survey 



Décrire les taux de tabagisme, l’âge de début de l’usage du tabac et les efforts de renoncement au tabac chez les filles et les garçons adolescents autochtones en Colombie-Britannique, et examiner les rapports entre le tabagisme et le profil sociodémographique, la dépression et divers aspects de la satisfaction de vivre.


Nous avons procédé à l’analyse secondaire des données de l’enquête « British Columbia Survey on Smoking and Health II », qui mesure des facteurs démographiques et sociaux, les antécédents de tabagisme, la satisfaction de vivre et la dépression. Nous avons analysé les données des répondants se définissant comme étant autochtones et les données selon le sexe. Des modèles logistiques de régression ont été employés pour repérer les facteurs de risque de tabagisme actuel.


L’âge moyen des répondants était de 15 ans (déviation sensible [DS]=1,7), et 51 % étaient des femmes. Trente et un p. cent étaient des fumeurs actuels, et l’âge moyen de début de l’usage du tabac était de 11 ans (DS=3). En moyenne, les fumeurs fumaient 3,8 cigarettes par jour (DS=5,7), et la plupart des fumeurs (78 %) disaient avoir sérieusement pensé à abandonner le tabac. Plus de filles que de garçons fumaient, mais les filles fumaient moins de cigarettes. Le tabagisme des répondants augmentait avec l’augmentation du niveau de dépression (score CESD) et avec la baisse de la satisfaction de vivre. Le fait d’avoir un meilleur ami fumeur était le prédicteur le plus puissant du tabagisme actuel, augmentant la chance d’être fumeur par un facteur de 5,9.


Bien que les taux de tabagisme des répondants soient élevés, on observe un intérêt considérable pour le renoncement au tabac parmi les fumeurs actuels. Sachant que les jeunes sont motivés à abandonner le tabac, les programmes de renoncement peuvent augmenter les taux de succès en s’attaquant au tabagisme des pairs dans les initiatives de prévention et de renoncement et en incluant des stratégies culturellement appropriées pour favoriser la santé mentale.

Mots clés

Amérindiens adolescents tabagisme enquête transversale 


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Copyright information

© The Canadian Public Health Association 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter J. Hutchinson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Chris G. Richardson
    • 2
  • Joan L. Bottorff
    • 1
  1. 1.Faculty of Health and Social Development Univeristy of British Columbia OkanaganKelownaCanada
  2. 2.Dept. of Health Care and Epidemiology, UBC and Research Scientist at the Centre for Health Evaluation and Outcome SciencesProvidence Health Care Research InstituteCanada

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