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Effect of household children on adult ED smokers' motivation to quit

      Abstract

      Objective

      We hypothesized adult parenting smokers in the emergency department (ED) have a higher interest in quitting and may be more amenable to tobacco cessation counseling than smokers without children.

      Study Design

      Cross-sectional survey study of adult smokers in 8 US academic EDs.

      Results

      One thousand one hundred sixty-eight smokers enrolled, 441 (37.8%) with household children (total of 973 exposed children). Compared to smokers without household children, smokers with children were younger (mean age, 37.4 vs 42.8 years), more female (60.3% vs 40.3%), and nonwhite (57.5% vs 44.5%) (all P < .006). Groups did not differ in nicotine addiction (median Fagerstrom score, 4 vs 4; P = .31). Parenting smokers were more interested in quitting (mean Ladder of Contemplation score, 4.8 vs 5.1 [P = .02]), felt it more important to quit (median score, 9 vs 8 [P = .01]), and more confident to quit (7 vs 6 [P = .004]) than nonparenting smokers. Smoking inside the home was banned by 45% of smokers with children vs 30% without household children (P < .001).

      Conclusions

      Adult ED parenting smokers are interested in quitting and taking steps to limit their children's secondhand smoke exposure. Asking adult ED smokers about household children may enhance motivation to quit.
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