Evid Based Nurs 4:59 doi:10.1136/ebn.4.2.59
  • Qualitative

Late adolescent girls used 4 stories to describe their smoking patterns

 QUESTION: What are the smoking patterns of late adolescent girls?




6 high schools in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


25 adolescent girls aged 18 or 19 years (mean age 18 y) who were current (n=23) or former smokers (n=2) and attending high school. Participants were recruited using purposive sampling techniques.


Semistructured interviews of 30–40 minutes each were done in a private room in the girls' schools. Interviews were tape recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analysed using an open coding system. Categories were formed until data saturation was reached.

Main findings

4 major categories that described the smoking patterns of the late adolescent girls emerged in the form of stories.

The start story described when and why the girls began their smoking behaviour. Smoking behaviour emerged at varying ages from early puberty to late adolescence and stemmed from a need to “fit in” socially, to portray a “cool” or “mature” image, and to rebel. Peer and family influence were also expressed as factors for starting to smoke.

The smoking story …

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