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Ann Behav Med. 2014 Feb;47(1):48-56. doi: 10.1007/s12160-013-9548-9.

Structural stigma and cigarette smoking in a prospective cohort study of sexual minority and heterosexual youth.

Author information

1
Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, 722 West 168th St, Room 549.B, New York, NY, 10032, USA, mlh2101@columbia.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Sexual minority youth are more likely to smoke cigarettes than heterosexuals, but research into the determinants of these disparities is lacking.

PURPOSE:

This study aimed to examine whether exposure to structural stigma predicts cigarette smoking in sexual minority youth.

METHODS:

Prospective data from adolescents participating in the Growing Up Today Study (2000-2005) were utilized.

RESULTS:

Among sexual minority youth, living in low structural stigma states (e.g., states with non-discrimination policies inclusive of sexual orientation) was associated with a lower risk of cigarette smoking after adjustment for individual-level risk factors (relative risk [RR] = 0.97; 95 % confidence interval [CI], 0.96, 0.99; p = 0.02). This association was marginally significant after additional controls for potential state-level confounders (RR = 0.97; 95 % CI, 0.93, 1.00; p = 0.06). In contrast, among heterosexual youth, structural stigma was not associated with past-year smoking rates, documenting specificity of these effects to sexual minority youth.

CONCLUSIONS:

Structural stigma represents a potential risk factor for cigarette smoking among sexual minority adolescents.

PMID:
24136092
PMCID:
PMC3945734
DOI:
10.1007/s12160-013-9548-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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