Causes of smoking in Pakistan: An analysis of social factors

Sobia Nizami, A. Sobani, Emmon Raza, Noor ul Ain Baloch, Javaid A. Khan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To determine the factors contributing to the initiation and propagation of smoking in visitors to a major tertiary health center in Karachi, Pakistan. Methods: Seven major contributing factors to the initiation and propagation of smoking were presented to consenting study participants (n=170) in a questionnaire. Participants were then requested to use their experience and opinion to rate each of the given factors on a scale of 1 to 5 regarding its importance as a causative factor in the initiation and propagation of smoking. Results were analyzed using SPSSv16.0. Results: Preliminary analysis revealed occupational stress relief as the most important factor contributing to smoking with a mean score of 3.25 ± 1.32. Peer pressure ranked second (Score 3.20 ± 1.42). Domestic stress relief ranked third with a score of 3.19 ± 1.32. Smokers gave lower rating than non-smokers to most factors. Younger participants gave higher ratings to peer pressure, and most participants were found to have begun smoking at a young age. Conclusions: Even though the addictive power of nicotine or stress may appear as a factor in middle aged smokers, the root of their habit lies in the initiation due to peer pressure.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)198-201
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the Pakistan Medical Association
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011


  • Nicotine addiction
  • Peer pressure
  • Smoking
  • Stress relief


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