Prevalence and correlates of smoking and sexual activity among Hong Kong adolescents

T. H. Lam, Sunita M. Stewart, L. M. Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Scopus citations


Purpose: To report on the prevalence and correlates of smoking and sexual activity in a community sample of Hong Kong Chinese adolescents. Methods: Participants (N = 4116) aged 13 to 18 years were surveyed regarding smoking and physical heterosexual activity, relationships with family members, family involvement, social support, school performance and emotional adjustment. Data were analyzed using logistic regression analyses. Results: About 30% of participants reported ever smoking and 3.5% reported sexual intercourse. Current smoking was correlated with age, school performance and quality of relationship with mother. Sexual intercourse was correlated with age, gender, family involvement and social support. Smoking and sexual activity were significantly correlated with each other. Smoking and increasing levels of heterosexual physical contact were negatively correlated with emotional adjustment, even after controlling for common predictors to health-endangering behaviors and emotional adjustment. Conclusions: Smoking and sexual activity among adolescents are far less common in Hong Kong than in the West and their presence in a Hong Kong adolescent should alert the health practitioner to the possibility of significant psychosocial stress and maladjustment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)352-358
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2001


  • Adolescents
  • China
  • Cross-cultural
  • Hong Kong
  • Problem Behavior Theory
  • Sexual activity
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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