Focus points in prevention actions against legal substances’ abuse
Aim: To determine the factors associated with alcohol and tobacco abuse in Slovenian general population.
Material and methods: We performed an observational cross-sectional study in a representative sample of 1002 Slovenian inhabitants in June 2011. It was performed using a method of computer-assisted telephone interview. The telephone interview consisted of questions about the prevalence and duration of preselected health-related symptoms in the past month, questions about the presence of chronic diseases, question about the presence of current smoking, EQ-5D questionnaire and AUDIT-C questionnaire.
Results: Risky drinking was found in 103 (14.3 %) of the sample and smoking was found in 226 (22.6 %) of the sample. Men reported risky drinking more often when compared with women (17.7 vs. 10.5 %, P = 0.007). Multivariate analysis showed that male sex, current tobacco smoking, lower education level, self-reported presence of anxiety/depression and self-reported presence of muscle pain and excessive fatigue in the past month were independently associated with risky drinking and that male sex, lower education and income, the presence of chronic disease, self-reported problems in daily activities, risky drinking, self-reported troubles in sleeping and restless leg syndrome were independently associated with current tobacco smoking.
Conclusion: Risky alcohol drinking and smoking are still major public health problems in Slovenia and are associated with known demographic risk factors but also with some symptoms of somatoform disorders. These findings should be incorporated into the guidelines for family physicians as the important focus points for screening and intervening against legal substances’ abuse in their patients.