Current Content
Volume 43 - Number 1
January/February 2017

Children’s Exposure to Secondhand Smoke, Parental Nicotine Dependence, and Motivation to Quit Smoking
Jo Ann Kleier, Mary Mites-Campbell, and Kelly Henson-Evertz

More than 600,000 people die each year as a result of exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS); 28% of those deaths are children. Most exposure for children occurs in the home and is due to a parent smoking. Parental awareness and understanding of the exposure to SHS and the risk that parental smoking brings to the child may be an effective impetus for smoke avoidance and parental tobacco cessation. This descriptive, correlational study used data provided by a convenience sample of 184 smoking parental-figures, representing 376 children, recruited in community settings. Seven research questions were posed regarding the exposure of children to parental figures who smoke, the degree of the parentsí dependence on nicotine, and their level of motivation to stop smoking. Comparisons were made between income levels and ethnic/racial groups. Childrenís exposure to SHS was low; Asian children had the highest likelihood of exposure. The areas of most frequent exposure were multiunit residential communities and in a vehicle. Parents’ dependence on nicotine was moderately high, and parental motivation to quit smoking was high. However, parents who were the most dependent on nicotine were the least motivated to quit. Nurses working with both adult and pediatric populations should address the opportunities for exposure to SHS for their patient population. Community health nurses should specifically target workplaces, businesses, and communities with high numbers of Asian residents for public health education related to childhood exposure to SHS.