Get access

Nursing staff anxiety versus smoking habits

Authors

  • Athanassios Tselebis RN, MSc(Psych),

    1. Attending Psychologist, Ninth Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Sotiria Chest Diseases Hospital, Athens, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Aspasia Panaghiotou RN,

    1. Chief Nurse and Postgraduate Instructor in Nursing, Vocational Training Center, Sotiria Chest Diseases Hospital, Athens, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Ilia Theotoka MSc(Psych),

    1. Attending Psychologist, University of Athens Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, Eginition Hospital, Athens, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Ioannis Ilias MD, DSc(Med)

    1. Atteanding Physician, Chief Nurse and Postgraduate Instructor in Nursing, Vocational Training Center, Sotiria Chest Diseases Hospital, Athens, Greece
    Search for more papers by this author

Athanassios Tselebis, 4, Tsotakou Street, Ambelokipi, Gr-11526, Athens, Greece. Email: ilias@compulink.gr

Abstract

The aim of this study was to assess smoking habits versus anxiety levels of 114 female nurses. The Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory Scale (STAI, Questions 21–40) was used. Current smokers (n = 52) had the highest levels of anxiety (STAI score: mean ± SD, 43.04 ± 8.48) compared to non-smokers (n = 30), and ex-smokers (n = 32) (38.94 ± 6.45 and 36.56 ± 6.62, respectively; P < 0.02). Differences in STAI scores were greater between non-smokers and ex-smokers (P < 0.01), while the STAI scores of current smokers were positively correlated with their per day quota of cigarettes (Pearson’s: +0.65; P < 0.002). We concluded that even in people who are well-acquainted with the ill-effects of nicotine abuse, smoking habits persist and are correlated with levels of anxiety. Apparently the (perceived) stress-relieving effects of nicotine outweigh anxiety of nursing staff. Preventive programs, if based exclusively on information on the effects of smoking on health, seem to be ineffective. Alternatively, techniques aimed at the relief of anxiety may yield better results.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary