Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Domestic Violence Identified As Stressor Associated With Smoking

Date:
December 20, 2007
Source:
Harvard School of Public Health
Summary:
Using a large population survey researchers has found an association between domestic violence and adult smoking. Smoking and chewing tobacco contribute to some 800,000 deaths in India every year.

Using a large population survey in India, a new study from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers has found an association between domestic violence and adult smoking. 

Smoking and chewing tobacco contribute to some 800,000 deaths in India every year. The smoking rate for Indian men is around 29%, for women, approximately 3%. The rate of tobacco chewing is around 29% for men, 12% for women. Although rates of tobacco use are low among women, early indications are that these levels are on the rise. While the harmful effects of tobacco use are well-documented, there has been little research looking at the stressors associated with tobacco use among Indians.

One of those stressors, or risk factors, is domestic violence, a serious problem in India. Some 40% of Indian women report being slapped, kicked, hit or beaten during their marriages. Smaller studies in the U.S. have also found an association between domestic violence and smoking. Researchers hypothesize that smoking may act as a "stress reliever" in households that experience domestic violence. In fact, Indians who smoke or chew tobacco cite stress relief as one of the reasons they begin using and continue to use tobacco.

To see if there was a link between domestic violence and tobacco use in India, the researchers, led by lead author Leland Ackerson, a research fellow, and senior author S. V. Subramanian, associate professor in the Department of Society, Human Development and Health, used data from the National Family Health Survey, a representative cross-sectional survey administered in India during 1998-1999. The samples included 89,092 women and 278,977 family members aged 15 and older.

The researchers found that, for women who had ever been married, 19% reported incidents of abuse; 85% of abused women reported abuse by their husbands. The study found that women who reported past and current abuse had 20%-40% increased odds of tobacco use compared with women reporting no abuse, even after controlling for factors such as income and education level. Another finding was that smoking risk increased for any adult in households where domestic violence was prevalent, regardless of whether they were personally a victim, a perpetrator or neither.

"This is the first study to show a link between domestic violence and tobacco use in a developing country. It is a powerful piece of evidence that we found this same relationship in a place where poverty is endemic that had previously been shown only in wealthy nations," said Ackerson.

The study highlights yet another negative outcome of the social problem of domestic violence. "This research is important in terms of both tobacco control and the campaign against domestic violence," added Subramanian. "It reinforces the notion that addressing the psychological and social context is key in the fight against tobacco. Additionally, our findings provide further proof of the negative effects of domestic violence, evidence which will hopefully aid those working to address this problem."

Other HSPH co-authors of the study included Ichiro Kawachi and Elizabeth Barbeau.

"Exposure to Domestic Violence Associated With Adult Smoking In India: a Population-Based Study," Leland K. Ackerson, Ichiro Kawachi, Elizabeth M. Barbeau, S. V. Subramanian, Tobacco Control, December 11, 2007, 12: 378-383.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Harvard School of Public Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Harvard School of Public Health. "Domestic Violence Identified As Stressor Associated With Smoking." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219105811.htm>.
Harvard School of Public Health. (2007, December 20). Domestic Violence Identified As Stressor Associated With Smoking. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219105811.htm
Harvard School of Public Health. "Domestic Violence Identified As Stressor Associated With Smoking." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071219105811.htm (accessed April 19, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Study On Artists' Brain Shows They're 'Structurally Unique'

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — The brains of artists aren't really left-brain or right-brain, but rather have extra neural matter in visual and motor control areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) — A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

Are School Dress Codes Too Strict?

AP (Apr. 16, 2014) — Pushing the limits on style and self-expression is a rite of passage for teens and even younger kids. How far should schools go with their dress codes? The courts have sided with schools in an era when school safety is paramount. (April 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) — A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins