Document Type



Public Health

First Advisor's Name

Wasim Maziak

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Purnima Madhivanan

Second Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Third Advisor's Name

Kristopher Fennie

Third Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Fourth Advisor's Name

Fatma Huffman

Fourth Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member

Fifth Advisor's Name

Boubakari Ibrahimou

Fifth Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Member


Adolescents, Cigarette, Initiation, Longitudinal, Smoking, Waterpipe

Date of Defense



The prevalence of waterpipe smoking exceeds that of cigarettes among adolescents in the Middle East where waterpipe is believed as less harmful, less addictive and can be a safer alternative to cigarettes. This dissertation tested the gateway hypothesis that waterpipe can provide a bridge to initiate cigarette smoking, identified the predictors of cigarette smoking progression, and identified predictors of waterpipe smoking progression among a school-based sample of Jordanian adolescents (mean age ± SD) (12.7 ±0.61) years at baseline.

Data for this research have been drawn from Irbid Longitudinal Study of smoking behavior, Jordan (2008-2011). The grouped-time survival analysis showed that waterpipe smoking was associated with a higher risk of cigarette smoking initiation compared to never smokers (P < 0.001) and this association was dose dependent (P < 0.001). Predictors of cigarette smoking progression were peer smoking and attending public schools for boys, siblings’ smoking for girls, and the urge to smoke for both genders. Predictors of waterpipe smoking progression were enrollment in public schools, frequent physical activity, and low refusal self-efficacy for boys, ever smoking cigarettes, friends’ and siblings’ waterpipe smoking for girls. Awareness of harms of waterpipe among boys and seeing warning labels on the tobacco packs by girls were protective against waterpipe smoking progression.

In Conclusion, waterpipe can serve as a gateway to cigarette smoking initiation among adolescents. Waterpipe and cigarette smoking progressions among initiators were solely family-related among girls, and mainly peer-related among boys. The unique gender differences for both cigarette and waterpipe smoking among Jordanian adolescents in Irbid call for cultural and gender-specific smoking prevention interventions to prevent the progression of smoking among initiators.





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