Which dimensions of Health Literacy predict the adoption of smoking preventive Behaviors?

Rahman Panahi, Ali Ramezankhani, Aliasghar Haerimehrizi, Mahmoud Tavousi, Mania Khalilpour Darestani, Shamsaddin Niknami



Background: Health literacy (HL) is related with the adoption of preventive behaviors. Considering the increase smoking among students, this study aimed to determine the effective dimensions of HL in predicting the adoption of smoking preventive behaviors in students.
Materials and methods: In the present cross-sectional and descriptive study, 280 dormitory students of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences were selected through single-stage cluster sampling method.A questionnaire of HL measurement (HL for Iranian Adults) and also a valid and reliable researcher-made
questionnaire were exploited for measuring the adoption of smoking preventive behaviors. The collected data were analyzed using SPSS software (version 16) and descriptive statistics, Pearson correlation coefficient and multiple logistic regression analysis. All stages of the study were conducted ethically.
Results: The mean (± standard deviation) score for adoption of smoking preventive behaviors were 39.36±19.16 out of 100. Understanding and access to health information dimensions received the highest scores, while decision making and application of health information as well as reading obtained the lowest
scores. Multiple regression analysis reflected that the dimensions of understanding (β=0.216, P=0.017) and decision making and the application of health information (β=0.324, P=0.001) were predictors of adoption of smoking preventive behaviors. Overall, these variables could predict 23.1% of behavioral changes.
Conclusion: According to the results of the study, in designing educational interventions for the prevention of smoking, special attention should be paid to HL, especially the dimensions of reading, understanding and decision making as well as application of health information in the audience.

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