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    An Investigation of Factors Encouraging and Deterring EC use: A Thematic Analysis of Accounts from UK Adults

    Wilson, Georgia ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0518-2240, Keenan, Joseph ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8855-1776, Grogan, Sarah ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7510-765X, Porcellato, Lorna, Powell, Susan and Gee, Ivan (2022) An Investigation of Factors Encouraging and Deterring EC use: A Thematic Analysis of Accounts from UK Adults. Psychology & Health, 37 (11). pp. 1379-1395. ISSN 0887-0446

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    Objective: This study aimed to explore E-cigarette (EC) accounts from a small sample of UK adults with varied smoking/EC experiences. This was to contribute to existing knowledge of adult perceptions and understand the factors that encourage or deter use to inform health messaging aimed at professionals, policy makers and the general public. Design: Twelve participants, five men and seven women aged 23-55 years (mean age 32.43) with mixed smoking/EC backgrounds took part in face-to-face interviews, analysed using semantic-level inductive thematic analysis. Results: The analysis identified three key themes. Social influence (1) relates to the understanding of the social representations of ECs. Representation and knowledge (2) captures the impact of varied EC related communication on perception. Aspects of addiction (3) conveys aspects of nicotine addiction and how this influences EC use. Conclusion: ECs were generally perceived as more socially acceptable than cigarettes by non-smokers, although there were varying levels of acceptability depending on the type of EC device used. There was also unanimity concerning uncertainty surrounding the devices. Behavioural/sensory elements and personal enjoyment of ECs were consistent elements that encouraged or deterred use. Although non-smokers/vapers did not use the devices, they expressed similar apprehensions to those who did.

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