Background: These days, hookah smoking has gained popularity among people in many communities, especially among youths and students, and more attention to this issue seems necessary. The purpose of this study was to determine the factors affecting hookah smoking among Sabzevar Azad University students.

Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on university students in Sabzevar, Iran in 2014. The questionnaire was developed and its validity and reliability were assessed. Three hundred six male students of Sabzevar Azad University were selected by simple random sampling and questionnaires were filled out by them. The collected data were analyzed by SPSS software and the Chi-Square and Independent-samples t-test.

Results: The results showed that 47.7% of the participants had a history of smoking hookah. The main factors affecting hookah smoking from participants' point of view were: filling leisure time, availability of hookah, positive social appearance, friends' invitation and relief from anxieties. Chi-Square tests showed that there was no significant relationship between fathers' level of education (p=0.41), mothers' level of education (p=0.46), fathers' job (p=0.18), mothers' job (p=0.53) and students’ current grade (p=0.41) with hookah smoking. The study showed significant relationship between present hookah smoking and awareness about complications of the hookah (p=0.01). 

Conclusion: Interventions to reduce and quit hookah smoking among students should include several items, such as teaching problem-solving skills to fill leisure time properly and to deal with the temptation of hookah smoking, as well as teaching refusal skills at the invitation of friends for hookah.


Keywords: Leisure time, Hookah smoking, Students
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