The Intergenerational Transmission of Cigarette Smoking: Comparing Non-Hispanic White, Black and Hispanic Youth

Peter Brownell, RAND Corporation
Margaret M. Weden, RAND Corporation
Jeremy Miles, RAND Corporation
Michael S. Pollard, RAND Corporation

This study examines racial/ethnic differences in maternal smoking as a predictor of children’s smoking behavior. Using latent trajectory analysis and a sample of mother-child dyads from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, we identified four trajectories of past 30 day smoking among youth ages 14-25. Using multinomial logit models, we identified factors predicting membership in these smoking trajectories and examined racial/ethnic differences in such predictors. Non-Hispanic black youth were at significantly lower risk than non-Hispanic white or Hispanic youth of membership in any of the three smoking trajectories (reference trajectory: “nonsmoker”). We found no racial/ethnic differences in the relationship of maternal smoking variables to membership in the “early start” and “late start” trajectories. However, two categories indicating ongoing maternal post-pregnancy daily smoking, with and without smoking during pregnancy, differed significantly as predictors of membership in the “early experiment” trajectory between non-Hispanic blacks and one or both other racial/ethnic groups.

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Presented in Poster Session 2