Prevalence, knowledge and factors associated with e-cigarette use among parents of secondary school children

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

108 Downloads (Pure)


Identify prevalence rates and attitudes towards e-cigarette use among parents to inform prevention strategies designed to reduce uptake in young people.

Study design
A mixed methods sequential study guided by the Theory of Planned Behaviour.

This research involved two phases. Phase one was an elicitation study using focus groups, interviews and open-ended questionnaires (N = 17) to elicit parental behavioural, normative, and control beliefs around e-cigarette use. Findings from phase 1 were used to inform a questionnaire administered to a sample of 612 parents in phase 2. The aim of phase 2 was to identify and explain factors that influence parental attitudes and motivations towards e-cigarette use. Parents were recruited through post-primary schools and were sent a link to an online survey.

Approximately 19% of parents had tried an e-cigarette, with 9% reporting current use. Sociodemographic variables, TPB constructs and knowledge of e-cigarettes, accounted for 43% and 60% of ever use and intention to use an e-cigarette, respectively. Intention, gender, age and free school meal entitlement were associated with ever use. Intention to use an e-cigarette was related to lower educational level, current smoking of traditional cigarettes, more positive attitudes, greater social pressure, having greater control over use and knowledge.

Prevention strategies designed to reduce uptake in young people should raise awareness of the health risks of e-cigarette use, legislation and regulations and highlight the role parents play in encouraging young people to abstain from using an e-cigarette.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100334
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalPublic Health in Practice
Early online date2 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 31 Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded by Chest Heart and Stroke Northern Ireland [grant number 14522]. The sponsor had no involvement in data collection, analysis, interpretation of the data, writing of the report or the decision to submit the manuscript for publication. The authors would like to thank Professor Linda Bauld University of Edinburgh who supported and advised on the research protocol.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors


  • E-cigarettes
  • vaping
  • theory of planned behaviour
  • parents
  • attitude
  • adolescents
  • young people
  • Parents
  • Attitudes
  • e-cigarettes
  • Theory of planned behavior
  • Vaping
  • Adolescents


Dive into the research topics of 'Prevalence, knowledge and factors associated with e-cigarette use among parents of secondary school children'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this