"It's Not a Life or Death Thing": A Grounded Theory Study of Smoking Decisions among Chinese Americans

By Lu, Yu | The Qualitative Report, March 2017 | Go to article overview

"It's Not a Life or Death Thing": A Grounded Theory Study of Smoking Decisions among Chinese Americans


Lu, Yu, The Qualitative Report


Smoking results in a high mortality rate for Chinese Americans. Little is known, however, about the decisions members of this group make that lead to these unhealthy behaviors. Examining smoking decisions could help us understand these choices as well as develop effective prevention strategies. This grounded theory study was conducted to understand Chinese Americans' smoking decisions. Fifty-four individual interviews and three focus groups were conducted with Chinese Americans of different smoking statuses. The findings describe five smoking decisions including the trajectory of these behaviors. Optimistic bias is identified as one of the main reasons that regular smokers decide not to quit. Some Chinese Americans decide to smoke in order to protect themselves from secondhand smoke because of the perception that secondhand smoke is more dangerous than active smoking. Finally, many Chinese Americans change their smoking behaviors after immigration, with their social environment after immigration playing a key role. Keywords: Smoking, Decision-Making, Chinese Americans, Grounded Theory, Optimistic Bias, Immigration

Cigarette smoking is a significant global health issue that has been considered a priority for the world health community (WHO, 2008). Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death resulting in over 5 million deaths each year worldwide (WHO, 2008) including 480,000 deaths in the U.S. alone (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014). Tobacco increases mortality from cancer, cardiovascular and heart diseases (Gandini et al., 2008; He et al., 2008), however, Chinese Americans continue to smoke despite reductions in smoking among American populations (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014; Gomez et al., 2013; McCracken et al., 2007). This study explores the smoking decision-making processes of Chinese Americans who continue to risk severe health problems for themselves and others around them to maintain their smoking behaviors. Understanding smoking decisions could help us better understand these choices as well as develop effective prevention and treatment strategies (Chang, Song, & Lee, 2008).

Previous research identified a variety of factors that influence Chinese Americans' smoking behavior including low education level (Yu, Chen, Kim, & Abdulrahim, 2002), low language proficiency (Fu, Ma, Tu, Siu, & Metlay, 2003), lack of adequate knowledge about smoking consequences (Hu et al., 2006) and early warning signs and symptoms of cancer (Yu et al., 2002), positive social smoking norms (Tu, Walsh, Tseng, & Thompson, 2000), perceived benefits of smoking (FitzGerald, Poureslami, & Shum, 2015), acculturation (Sussman & Truong, 2010), and depression (Tsoh, Lam, Delucchi, & Hall, 2003). These factors provide a context in which Chinese Americans make smoking decisions. However, to date, little is known about the decision process, itself. We know, for example, that lack of knowledge about smoking harm is one of the main reasons that Chinese Americans smoke (Hu et al., 2006). However, we do not know if Chinese Americans use inaccurate information or just lack basic information in making smoking decisions. In other words, how these identified factors (e.g., lack of knowledge) play out in Chinese Americans' smoking decisions remain unknown. The aim of the study is to describe Chinese Americans' smoking decision processes and identify factors that influence these decisions.

Literature Review

Smoking Disparities and Chinese Americans

The past 50 years have witnessed aggressive tobacco control programs in the U.S. that resulted in great changes of the social acceptability of smoking (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2014) and, ultimately, in decreased smoking prevalence (CDC, 2011). However, this success has not been uniformly shared by all segments of the population. Smoking remains a problem particularly among Asian Americans (Maxwell, Crespi, Alano, Sudan, & Bastani, 2012; Ma, Tan, Fang, Toubbeh, & Shive, 2005), with its prevalence exceeding 50% in some Asian communities (Averbach, Lam, Lam, Sharfstein, Cohen, & Koh, 2002). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

"It's Not a Life or Death Thing": A Grounded Theory Study of Smoking Decisions among Chinese Americans
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.