Perceptions and Health Effects of Electronic Cigarettes Among College Students

Safia Centner, Dr. Suha Saleh, Department of Health Sciences, University of Central Florida, 4000 Central Florida Blvd, Orlando, FL 32816

Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are devices that allow users to inhale an aerosol which contains chemical additives. E-cigarettes are becoming common for nicotine delivery in addition to traditional cigarettes.  The goal of this study was e to determine how college students perceive e-cigarettes, how often college students used e-cigarettes, and how they viewed e-cigarettes compared to tobacco cigarettes. This was accomplished through sending a survey built on Qualtrics to UCF students via Knights Email. This survey included questions about demographics, perceptions, and usage of e-cigarettes. The collected data was downloaded into SPSS and analyzed to compare data among different groups. The demographics of the participants reflected the overall student demographics at UCF including age, ethnicity, and academic status, which allowed for the results to be related to the university population. A little over half of the students who participated in this study have tried e-cigarettes. Those who use e-cigarettes reported that the availability of a variety of flavors was the most attractive reason for them to use e-cigarettes. Most participants believe e-cigarettes to be equal in harm or less harmful than tobacco cigarettes. Gender differences were observed in survey responses related to the use of e-cigarettes and the perception of potential harm. The results of the study provide valuable information that can be used in health education programs about e-cigarettes. The results also support the need for future studies to assess the health impact of e-cigarettes on the physiological functions of lungs and other tissues and compare that to tobacco cigarette damage. 

Additional Abstract Information

Presenter: Safia Centner

Institution: University of Central Florida

Type: Poster

Subject: Health & Human Development

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 7
Date/Time: Tue 3:30pm-4:30pm
Session Number: 5107