Prevalence and predictors of waterpipe smoking initiation and progression among adolescents and young adults in waves 1-4 (2013-18) of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) study
Ebrahimi Kalan M,
Nicotine Tob Res
BACKGROUND: Waterpipe tobacco (WPT) smoking has increased among the young population in the United States (US). This study assessed the extent and predictors of WPT smoking initiation and progression among US adolescents (12-17 years) and young adults (18-24 years) longitudinally. METHODS: We analyzed data from 4 waves (2013-2018) of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) study comprising 10,692 respondents (adolescents=5,428 and young adults=5,264). Kaplan-Meier survival method estimated probabilities of WPT initiation and progression. Cox proportional hazards regression models delineated predictors of the outcomes. RESULTS: Between 2013 to 2018, 4.8% of adolescents initiated and 10.6% progressed WPT smoking. Among young adults, 18.5% initiated and 14.1% progressed WPT smoking during the same time interval. Predictors among adolescents included, WPT initiation: Hispanic ethnicity (adjusted odds ratio (aHR)=1.75, 95% confidence interval (CI)=1.23-2.49), lower harm perception (aHR=2.89, 95% CI=2.10-3.98), and other tobacco products use (aHR=3.97, 95% CI=2.73-5.78); WPT progression: illicit drug use (aHR=4.60, 95% CI=1.99-10.67). Predictors among young adults included, WPT initiation: non-Hispanic Black (aHR=2.31, 95% CI=1.78-3.00), Hispanic (aHR=1.77, 95% CI=1.34-2.33), lower harm perception (aHR=2.77, 95% CI=2.19-3.50), and other tobacco products use (aHR=3.14, 95% CI=2.25-4.38); WPT progression: non-Hispanic Black (aHR=1.51 95% CI=1.09-2.10), lower harm perception (aHR=1.80, 95% CI=1.41-2.30), and alcohol use (aHR=1.61, 95% CI=1.13-2.30). CONCLUSIONS: Results indicate a high prevalence of WPT initiation and progression among adolescents and young adults over time, with minority racial/ethnic groups being at greater risk for both. WPT-specific risk communication interventions (e.g., educational campaigns and health warning labels) are warranted to limit WPT smoking among young people.