Table of Contents
ISRN Addiction
Volume 2013, Article ID 796570, 10 pages
Research Article

Korean American Women's Experiences with Smoking and Factors Associated with Their Quit Intentions

1Department of Psychiatry, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA 01652, USA
2Department of Social Welfare, Korean Bible University, Seoul 139-791, Republic of Korea
3Department of Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06511, USA

Received 10 June 2013; Accepted 30 June 2013

Academic Editors: J. Krejci, X. Liu, S. Rahman, and Y. Ye

Copyright © 2013 Sun S. Kim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study explored Korean American women’s experiences with smoking and tested the theory of planned behavior to identify factors associated with their intentions to quit smoking. It employed a mixed-methods research design, using qualitative and quantitative data. Participants were recruited via a combination of random (N = 49) and convenience (N = 45) sampling techniques. Women in this study initiated smoking at age of 23 on average, and nearly half smoked at indoor houses. They initiated smoking out of curiosity about the effect and belief that smoking would relieve their stress. Reasons for continued smoking were (a) to avoid nicotine withdrawal symptoms, (b) to cope with life stressors, including acculturative stress, and (c) to fulfill one’s destiny as a lifetime smoker. Many attempted to quit due to health issues and pregnancy. Fear of disclosure and limited English proficiency were found to be major barriers to seeking help for quitting. Past-year quit attempt(s), attitudes toward quitting, and perceived family norm favoring quitting explained 25% of the variance in intentions to quit smoking ( , ). Findings suggest that gender- and culture-specific intervention strategies are needed to assist Korean American women in smoking cessation.