Tip Sheet for August 2006: Social Ties and Health

Article ID: 521464

Released: 27-Jun-2006 9:00 AM EDT

Source Newsroom: American Public Health Association (APHA)

"LIGHT" CIGARETTES MAY ACTUALLY HAMPER EFFORTS TO QUIT SMOKINGThe availability of low-tar/low-nicotine cigarettes, also known as "light cigarettes" or "lights," may actually deter smokers from kicking the habit.

A study based on responses from 12,285 people who currently smoked or had ever smoked found 37 percent had used light cigarettes in an attempt to reduce their health risk. Smokers who had ever used such light cigarettes were more than 50 percent less likely to have quit smoking than those who had never smoked light cigarettes.

"The combination of the dangerous health consequences of lights, the widespread misconception held by many smokers that lights are healthier and the evidence supporting an association between use of lights to reduce health risk and reduced smoking cessation all pose an important question: How should public and clinical health care providers address patients' use or intended use of lights?" the study's authors wrote. "Wherever possible, smokers should be provided with accurate information on the potentially detrimental effects of the use of lights to reduce health risk on subsequent smoking cessation." [From: "Cessation among smokers who used 'Lights': Results from the 2000 National Health Interview Survey." ]

JOB STRAIN CAN LEAD TO HIGH BLOOD PRESSUREStressed-out workers with little social support on the job are at risk for high blood pressure, according to a study of more than 8,000 professionals.

The study found that job strain was more likely to raise blood pressure in men than women, but both genders faced the health risk especially if they lacked social support at work. Job strain was measured using a questionnaire that asked about factors such as the ability of workers to make decisions on the job and pressures such as deadlines.

High blood pressure is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and stroke.[From: "The Impact of Job Strain on Blood Pressure: A Prospective Study of Men and Women White-collar Workers." ]

CITY-DWELLING AMERICAN INDIANS/ALASKA NATIVES FACE FORMIDABLE HEALTH AND SOCIAL DISPARITIESAmerican Indians/Alaska Natives are twice as likely as the general population to be poor, unemployed and lack a college degree, according to a study of 1990-2000 Census data.

The study focused on the health status of American Indians/Alaska Natives served by 34 federally funded Urban Indian Health Organizations. Based on 1999 income, about 25 percent of American Indians/Alaska Natives living in the urban centers studied lived in households with incomes below the federal poverty level. Almost one-third of all American Indian/Alaska Native children were living in poverty.In addition, nearly one in four American Indians/Alaska Natives living in the areas studied were disabled, compared to one in five of the general population. Rates of premature birth, births to teenage mothers and maternal smoking were all significantly higher among American Indians/Alaska Natives when compared to the general population.

"Such disparities can be addressed through improvements in health care access, high quality data collection, and policy initiatives designed to provide sufficient resources and a more unified vision of the health of urban American Indians/Alaska Natives," the study's authors said.[From: "A Nationwide Population-Based Study Identifying Health Disparities Between American Indians/Alaska Natives and the General Populations Living in Select Urban Counties." ]

TOBACCO AND ALCOHOL ADS STILL PREVALENT DURING TELEVISED SPORTSDespite efforts to curtail tobacco and alcohol advertising, alcohol and tobacco brands remain highly visible on sports programming.

A content analysis of more than 83 hours of televised sports from 2000-2002 found that rates of certain types of alcohol advertising were about equal to five years ago but markedly increased from 10 years ago. The types of alcohol advertising that remain are "strategically chosen to increase the likelihood of audience exposure," such as sponsorship of on-screen graphics that display game or sport statistics to the television audience. Additionally, ads for upcoming sporting events and products such as car batteries feature beer signs in the background. And although the Master Tobacco Settlement Agreement of 1998 required tobacco companies to reduce sports sponsorship, the study found that cigarette brand names remain prevalent on televised sports.[From: "Ten Years and One Master Settlement Agreement Later: The Nature and Frequency of Alcohol and Tobacco Promotion in Televised Sports, 2000 through 2002." ]

HOMELESS MOMS FARING EVEN WORSE THAN A DECADE AGOHomeless families are poorer, and homeless mothers report more physical health limitations, major depression and post-traumatic stress disorder now than a decade ago, according to a study comparing such families in 1993 and 2003.

The study, focusing on health status and depression among homeless mothers in Worcester, Mass., was based on interviews with 148 homeless mothers living in shelters in 2003 and interviews with 220 homeless mothers in 1993. While average total income was equivalent in each study, families in the 2003 study were poorer when accounting for the effect of inflation on spending power over the intervening decade. Overall, women in the 2003 study appeared to be suffering from more acute as well as chronic mental health problems and had depression rates four times those found in women interviewed a decade earlier.

An estimated 420,000 American families are homeless each year, putting 900,000 children at risk for developmental and behavioral problems.[From: "A Comparison of Homeless Mothers in Worcester, Massachusetts: 1993 vs. 2003." ]

TABLE OF CONTENTSBelow is the tentative table of contents for the August 2006 issue of the American Journal of Public Health. All articles will be published online June 29, 2006, at 4 p.m. (ET) under "First Look," and are scheduled to appear in the August 2006 print issue of the Journal.

Letters and Responses: An Old Custom, A New Threat to Tobacco ControlBrian A Primack, Jay D Aronson, and Aaron A Agarwal

Screening for Suicide RiskMary Jane Rotheram-Borus

Hallfors Response to AJPH Letter to the Editor 090597 by Rotheram-BorusDenise Hallfors and Allan Steckler

Editor's Choice: Social Ties and HealthJennifer Ellis

Commentaries: Toward a Theory-Driven Model of Acculturation in Public Health ResearchAna F. Abraido-Lanza, Adria N. Armbrister, Karen R. Florez, and Alejandra N. Aguirre

Health Policy and Ethics: Increased Access to Unrestricted Pharmacy Sales of Syringes in Seattle-King County, Washington: Structural and Individual-Level Changes, 1996 versus 2003Ryan J. Deibert, Gary Goldbaum, Theodore R Parker, Holly Hagan, Robert Marks, Michael Hanrahan, and Hanne Thiede

Diffusion of the D.A.R.E and Syringe Exchange ProgramsDon C. Des Jarlais, Zili Sloboda, Samuel R. Friedman, Barbara Tempalski, Courtney McKnight, and Naomi Braine

Association of Increased Social Unacceptability of Cigarette Smoking to Reduction in Cigarette ConsumptionBenjamin Alamar and Stanton A. Glantz

Sustainability of Public Health Programs: the Example of Tobacco Treatment Services in MassachusettsNancy R LaPelle, Jane Zapka, and Judith K. Ockene

Government, Politics, and Law:Public Health and the Anticorporate Movement: Rationale and RecommendationsWilliam H. Wiist

The Impact of State Laws Limiting Malpractice Damage Awards on Health Care ExpendituresFred J. Hellinger and William E Encinosa

Public Health Then and Now: Asbestos-Related Disease in South Africa: The Social Production of an Invisible EpidemicLundy Braun and Sophia Kisting

Voices from the Past: "Andrija Stampar: Charismatic Leader of Social Medicine and International Health," with an excerpt from Stampar's "On Health Politics"Theodore M. Brown and Elizabeth Fee

Research and Practice: Psychosocial Care for Adult and Child Survivors of the Tsunami Disaster in IndiaSusan M Becker

Monitoring Socioeconomic Disparities in Death: Comparing Individual-Level Education and Area-Based Socioeconomic MeasuresDavid H Rehkopf, Lorna T Haughton, Jarvis T Chen, Pam D Waterman, SV Subramanian, and Nancy Krieger

Edentulism Among Mexican Adults Aged 35 Years Old and Older, and Associated FactorsCarlo Eduardo Medina-Solis, Ricardo Pérez-Núñez, Gerardo Maupome, and Juan Fernando Casanova-Rosado

Emergency Contraceptive Prescribing Practices: Does Hospital Religious Affiliation Change the Way Clinicians Treat Patients?Susan Rubin, Surah Grumet, and Linda Prine

Experiences of Hurricane Katrina Evacuees in Houston Shelters: Implications for Future PlanningMollyann Brodie, Erin Weltzien, Drew Altman, Robert J. Blendon, and John M. Benson

Interpersonal Violence among Women Seeking Welfare: Unraveling LivesE. Anne Lown, Laura A. Schmidt, and James Wiley

Interpersonal Violence in the Lives of Urban American Indian and Alaska Native Women: Implications for Health, Mental Health, and Help-Seeking Teresa A Evans-Campbell, Taryn Lindhorst, Bu Huang, and Karina L Walters

Effects of Domestic Violence on Perinatal and Early-Childhood Mortality: Evidence from North IndiaSaifuddin Ahmed, Michael A. Koenig, and Rob B Stephenson

Orphan Care in Botswana's Working Households: Growing Responsibilities in the Absence of Adequate SupportCandace M. Miller, Sofia Gruskin, Divya Rajaraman, S.V. Subramanian, and S. Jody Heymann

Effects of Job Strain on Blood Pressure: A Prospective Study of Male and Female White-Collar WorkersChantal Guimont, Chantal Brisson, Gilles R Dagenais, Alain Milot, Michel Vézina, Benoît Mâsse, Jocelyne Moisan, Nathalie Laflamme, and Caty Blanchette

A Comparison of the Health and Mental Health Status of Homeless Mothers in Worcester, Mass: 1993 and 2003.Linda F. Weinreb, John Buckner, Valerie Williams, and Joanne Nicholson

Parental English Proficiency and Children's Health Services AccessStella M Yu, Zhihuan J Huang, Renee Schwalberg, and Rebecca Nyman

Social Capital and Health: Civic Engagement, Community Size, and Recall of Health MessagesK. Viswanath, Whitney Randolph Steele, and John R. Finnegan

Neighborhood Social Capital and Dental Injuries in Brazilian AdolescentsMarcos Pascoal Pattussi, Rebecca Hardy, and Aubrey Sheiham

Relationships Between Self-Reported Unfair Treatment and Prescription Medication Use, Illicit Drug Use, and Alcohol Dependence Among Filipino AmericansGilbert C. Gee, Jorge Delva, and David Takeuchi

Organization and Financing of Alcohol and Substance Abuse Programs for American Indians and Alaska NativesBentson H. McFarland, Roy M. Gabriel, Douglas A. Bigelow, and R. Dale Walker

A Nationwide Population-Based Study Identifying Health Disparities Between American Indians/Alaska Natives and the General Populations Living in Select Urban CountiesMei L. Castor, Michael S. Smyser, Maile M. Taualii, Alice N. Park, Shelley A. Lawson, and Ralph A. Forquera

Variations in the Health Conditions of 6 Chicago Community Areas: A Case for Local-Level DataAmi M Shah, Steven Whitman, and Abigail Silva

Ten Years and 1 Master Settlement Agreement Later: The Nature and Frequency of Alcohol and Tobacco Promotion in Televised Sports, 2000 through 2002Lara Zwarun

Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Report of Physician-Provided Smoking Cessation Advice: Analysis of the 2000 National Health Interview SurveyCatalina Lopez-Quintero, Rosa Crum, and Yehuda D. Neumark

Cessation Among Smokers Who Used "Light" Cigarettes: Results from the 2000 National Health Interview SurveyHilary A Tindle, Nancy A Rigotti, Roger B Davis, Elizabeth M Barbeau, Ichiro Kawachi, and Saul Shiffman

Educational Inequalities in Initiation, Cessation, and Prevalence of Smoking Among 3 Italian Birth CohortsBruno Federico, Giuseppe Costa, and Anton E. Kunst

Efficacy Versus Effectiveness Trial Results of an Indicated "Model" Substance Abuse Program: Implications for Public HealthDenise Dion Hallfors, Hyunsan Cho, Victoria Sanchez, Shereen Khatapoush, Hyung Min Kim, and Daniel J. Bauer

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