Patterns of tobacco use and quit attempts in rural India
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Nitte University, Public Health, India
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A792
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India is the second largest consumer of tobacco and accounts for about 1/6th of the global deaths due to tobacco. The objectives of this study were to determine the patterns of tobacco use and the association of tobacco use and quit attempts with socio-demographic variables in a rural community.

The study was carried out among 580 men and women aged 15 years and above who visited rural health care centres in two districts of Karnataka, India during July-August 2015 and reported ever using tobacco. Primary data was collected using a semi-structured interview schedule, administered by a trained medical professional after taking informed consent. Univariate and bivariate analysis, and multiple logistic regressions were carried out using SPSS.

Majority of our respondents (73.4%) were Current daily users of Tobacco. The most common form of tobacco used in both genders was smokeless tobacco but a significantly higher proportion of women (97%) used smokeless tobacco compared to men (45%). The most popular tobacco product among both genders was betel quid with tobacco. Age of initiation of tobacco use was highest in the 20-34 age groups for both genders. About 29% of the respondents reported attempting to quit tobacco while 62.4% said they were not interested in quitting tobacco.

Most Public Service announcements and media campaigns in India are centred around the concept of 'Smoking Kills' and only target men but as seen from our study the burden of smokeless tobacco in the community is higher than smoking tobacco, more so among women. The low proportion of people wanting to quit tobacco indicates that people may still be unaware about the ill-effects of tobacco. For tobacco prevention and control highlighting the ill-effects of smoking as well as smokeless tobacco among both genders and providing cessation support are advised.