RESEARCH PAPER
Harm perception among Swedish daily smokers regarding nicotine, NRT-products and Swedish Snus
Tom Wikmans 1  
,  
 
 
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1
Research Group for Societal and Information Studies (FSI), Stockholm, Sweden
2
Institute for Tobacco Studies (ITS), Stockholm, Sweden
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Tom Wikmans   

Research Group for Societal and Information Studies (FSI), Ingemarsgatan 4B, Stockholm, Sweden
Publish date: 2010-08-13
 
Tobacco Induced Diseases 2010;8(August):9
KEYWORDS
ABSTRACT
Background:
In Sweden NRT-products and Snus, are easily available and used as smoking cessation aids. However, most quit attempts are made without any cessation aids. The limited use of these products as cessation aids may be influenced by the way smokers perceive the harmfulness of NRT-products and Snus compared to smoking. The present study examines these perceptions and their association with perceptions of the harmfulness of nicotine itself

Methods:
The study is based on the Swedish part of a two-nation web-based survey of daily smokers in Sweden (n = 1016) and Norway (n = 1000). Questionnaire items addressed perceptions of NRT-products’ and Snus’ harmfulness and nicotine’s part of the health risks of smoking. Data analyses included cross-tabulations and logistic regressions.

Results:
A majority, 59% of the answers to the question about harmfulness of NRT-products, and 75% of the answers about harmfulness of Snus, were inconsistent with the scientific evidence by demonstrating exaggerated perceptions of harmfulness. The strongest predictor of consistent answers was the perception of the harmfulness of nicotine. There were also significant associations with own experience of successful use of the products in question. Overall the perceptions of the harmfulness of nicotine were considerably exaggerated. This pattern was more pronounced among women than men. Prevailing misperceptions may be related to the way that different tobacco and nicotine products are presented in the media and other publicly available information sources.

Conclusions:
Public information about smoking and health should be expanded to include objective and unambiguous information regarding nicotine’s part in the harmfulness of smoking and the harmfulness of different nicotine-containing products compared to smoking. This is essential in order to preclude that misperceptions regarding these matters could discourage smokers from adopting effective cessation practices with use of nicotine-containing aids.

 
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4. Support for e-cigarette policies: a survey of smokers and ex-smokers in Great Britain
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5. Association Between Willingness to Use Snus to Quit Smoking and Perception of Relative Risk Between Snus and Cigarettes
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6. Exploring Attitudes Regarding Smokeless Tobacco Products for Risk Reduction
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8. Effects of a Fact Sheet on beliefs about the harmfulness of alternative nicotine delivery systems compared with cigarettes
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12. Trends in beliefs about the harmfulness and use of stop-smoking medications and smokeless tobacco products among cigarettes smokers: Findings from the ITC four-country survey
Ron Borland, Jae Cooper, Ann McNeill, Richard O'Connor, K Michael Cummings
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13. Public education about the relative harm of tobacco products: an intervention for tobacco control professionals: Table 1
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14. Insufficient knowledge about use of multiple tobacco/nicotine products
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15. Patterns of Dual Use of Snus and Cigarettes in a Mature Snus Market
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16. How people think about the chemicals in cigarette smoke: a systematic review
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17. How Social Care Beneficiaries in Poland Rate Relative Harmfulness of Various Tobacco and Nicotine-Containing Products
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18. Knowledge and Perceptions about Nicotine, Nicotine Replacement Therapies and Electronic Cigarettes among Healthcare Professionals in Greece
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19. Perceptions of the health risks related to cigarettes and nicotine among university faculty
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20. Harm perceptions of electronic cigarettes and nicotine: A nationally representative cross-sectional survey of young people in Great Britain
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