Introduction: Psychological factors have always been considered for their role on risk taking behavior such as substance abuse, risky driving and smoking. The aim of this study was to determine the association between smoking behavior and potential personality patterns among high school students in Tabriz, Iran.

Methods: Through a multistage sampling in a cross-sectional study, 1000 students were enrolled to represent the final grade high school student population of Tabriz, Iran in 2013. The personality patterns along with smoking status and some background information were collected through standard questionnaires along with Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory-III (MCMI-III). Fourteen personality patterns and ten clinical syndromes. ANOVA and Kruskal Wallis tests were used to compare numeric scales among the study participants, with respect to their smoking status. Stata version 13 statistical software package was used to analyze the data. Multivariate logistic regression was used to predict likelihood of smoking by personality status.

Results: Two logistic models were developed in both of whom male sex was identified as a determinant of regular smoking (1st model) and ever-smoking (2nd model). Depressive personality increased the likelihood of being a regular smoker by 2.8 times (OR=2.8, 95% CI: 1.3-6.1). The second personality disorder included in the model was sadistic personality with an odds ratio of 7.9 (96% CI: 1.2-53%). Histrionic personality increased the likelihood of experiencing smoking by 2.2 times (OR=2.2, 95% CI: 1.6-3.1) followed by borderline personality (OR=2.8, 95% CI: 0.97-8.1).

Conclusion: Histrionic and depressive personalities could be considered as strong associates of smoking, followed by borderline and sadistic personalities. A causal relationship couldn’t be assumed unless well controlled longitudinal studies reached the same findings using psychiatric interviews.


Keywords: Smoking; Personality; Students; MCMI-III
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