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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 47  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 19-23

Smokeless tobacco consumption among school children

1 Research Division, Gulf Medical University, Ajman-UAE, United Arab Emirates
2 Department of Community Medicine, Academy of Medical Sciences, Pariyaram Medical College, P O Kannur, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
J Muttapppallymyalil
Research Division, Gulf Medical University, Ajman-UAE
United Arab Emirates
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0019-509X.63872

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Background : More than one-third of the tobacco consumed regionally is of smokeless form. Aims : To determine the prevalence and pattern of smokeless tobacco use among school children. Settings and Design : This cross-sectional study was conducted among children in 5 randomly selected high schools in Kannur district, Kerala, India. Materials and Methods : This cross-sectional study was conducted among 1200 children. A self-administered questionnaire was used for data collection. Statistical Analysis : PASW 17 software was used for data analysis. Results : The mean age of the students was 14.4 years with a standard deviation (SD) of 1.2 years, and 8.5% (CI, 7.1-10.2) of the participants were tobacco users. Smokeless tobacco was used by 2% (CI, 1.2-3.4) of the participants. None of the female students used tobacco products. Among the tobacco users, the mean age at the start of any tobacco use was 12.8 years with an SD of 1.1 years. The minimum age was 12 years and the maximum was 14 years. More than 50% smokeless tobacco users started their habit at the age of 12 years; 38.5% of them started at the age of 13 years and remaining at the age of 14 years. The 84.6% smokeless tobacco users were using it 2-3 times a week and 39% of them revealed that the tobacco products were purchased from shops located near the schools. Among the users, one used to keep the quid in the mouth for more than half an hour. Conclusion : The study concludes that there is a need to educate the children regarding the hazards associated with tobacco consumption.


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