This article identifies factors that determine perceived accessibility of cigarettes among youth. It has been difficult to measure how easy it is for adolescents to obtain cigarettes due to the variety of potential sources, including peers, relatives and stores.
The authors used data from the second Development and Assessment of Nicotine Dependence in Youth Study, a four-year longitudinal survey of 1,246 sixth-graders that began in 2002. The perceived accessibility of cigarettes was measured by whether the respondents agreed with the statement, “It would be easy for me to get a cigarette.”
Further research is needed to identify whether changing the determinants of perceived accessibility results in changed perceptions, and whether changing perceived accessibility has an impact on smoking rates among youth.