Society of African Journal Editors

African Journal of Drug and Alcohol Studies

Pictorial warnings on cigarette packets: Effectiveness and deterrence among Egyptian youth

Authors: NH Hussein

Journal: African Journal of Drug and Alcohol Studies

Placing pictorial warning messages of potential health hazards of tobacco smoking on cigarette packets is mandatory by law in Egypt. Photos of victims of heavy tobacco smoking are placed on the front and back covers of cigarette packets in an attempt to warn both users and would be users of the health risks associated with long-term smoking habits. This research aims to assess the way tobacco users in their late adolescence, perceive pictorial warnings and their ability to reduce the prevalence of cigarette smoking among youth in Egypt. Through semi-structured in-depth  interviews with a sample of cigarette smokers, the research argues that various social, cultural, and economic factors constrain the effectiveness of pictorial warnings. A key finding is that in order to help reduce the prevalence of smoking among adolescents and youth, the etiology of tobacco smoking needs to be addressed instead of merely focusing on medical side-effects. Key Words : Cigarette smoking; tobacco; pictorial warning messages; late adolescents