Clearing the smoke screen: Smoking, alcohol consumption, and stress management techniques among canadian long-term care workers

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12 Scopus citations


Background: Currently, there is abundant research indicating that smoking and alcohol consumption have significant impacts on morbidity and mortality, though little is known about these behaviors among Canadian health care workers. The objective of this study was to examine health and coping behaviors, such as smoking and alcohol consumption as well as stress management techniques, among health care workers consisting of gendered, racialized, and immigrant employees. Methods: Drawing on a single-case, mixed-methods study in Ontario, Canada, this paper presents under-researched data about smoking practices, alcohol consumption, and stress management techniques among health care workers in labor-intensive, high-stress, high-turnover environments. In particular, it identifies the various mechanisms for maintaining health and well-being. Results: The findings suggest that 7.7% of survey respondents reported smoking while 43.4% reported alcohol consumption, which were reported more frequently among immigrants than among non-immigrants. Participants also reported health-promoting activities in face-to-face interviews, such as mindful breathing techniques and drawing upon social support, while a few respondents reported alcohol consumption to specifically cope with sleep disturbances and job stress. Conclusions: Although smoking and alcohol consumption were both connected with coping strategies and leisure, they were predominant in immigrant groups compared to non-immigrant groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6027
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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