Perceived risk of electronic cigarettes among Indonesian users

Ikhsan Budiarto(1), Dien Anshari(2*), Anhari Achadi(3), M Justin Byron(4)

(1) Universitas Indonesia
(2) Universitas Indonesia
(3) Universitas Indonesia
(4) University of North Carolina
(*) Corresponding Author


Purpose: This study aimed to assess the perceived risk of electronic cigarettes among Indonesian adult users.

Method: Data for this study came from the first wave of online cohort studies with samples of electronic cigarette users in Indonesia who are more than 17 years old (N = 1,322). Respondents were recruited through targeted ads on Facebook and Instagram to participate in an online survey. Perceived risk was measured by asking "how harmful are electronic cigarettes to your health?" with a range of response options from '0' (Don't know) to '4' (Very harmful). The main independent variables were vaping status (vaping only vs vaping and smoking), social support (having a close friend who is vaping vs. not) and perceived affordability of electronic cigarettes. Multiple linear regression was used to estimate the relationship between perceived risk and user's characteristics controlling for sociodemographic variables (gender, age, residential location, educational level, employment status, and monthly income).

Results: The majority of respondents are dual users (80.3%), have friends who are also users of electronic cigarettes (98.7%), perceived that electronic cigarettes are affordable (M=3.19, SD=1.17) and less harmful (M=1.37, SD=0.93). We found that perceived risk of the electronic cigarette was negatively associated with social support (β=-0.46, SE=0.23, p=0.042) and perceived affordability (β=-0.05, SE=0.02, p=0.025), but not associated with vaping status (β=0.09, SE=0.06, p=0.175), after being controlled by respondents' socio-demographic conditions.

Conclusion: The majority of electronic cigarette users in Indonesia perceived electronic cigarettes as less harmful. There is a need for a campaign to clearly communicate the risk of electronic cigarettes to the public.


electronic cigarettes; user perception; health risk


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