The hidden burden of tobacco use among school adolescents in Ethiopia: call for action
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Wachemo University, Public Health, Ethiopia
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A415
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Tobacco use is one of the leading public health threats in the world and the spread of is growing at fast among adolescents. However, little information is known about the magnitude and predictors of tobacco use in Ethiopia. Hence study was conducted to assess the prevalence and predictors of tobacco use among school adolescents of Ethiopia.

A cross sectional survey was employed among school adolescents in the age category of 13 - 19 years. The study was carried out to determine the prevalence of current (within the last 30 days) tobacco use among adolescents. Thus, 1704 students were selected from a total of 12 public and private schools in Ethiopia. A two-stage stratified sampling technique was employed to select the schools and the final sampled students were enrolled using systematic random sampling. Data were collected by using self-administered global youth tobacco survey questionnaires and descriptive statistics, bivariate and multivariate analysis were done.

The prevalence of cigarette and shisha smoking were found to be 17.2% and 12.6% respectively. In addition, more than half (60.8%) of adolescents were exposed to environmental tobacco smoke. In the multivariate analysis sex, alcohol use, parent smoking, peer smoking, exposure to movie with actors smoking, not being exposed to anti-smoking media messages, not discussing in the class about danger of smoking, and having perception that smoking is not dangerous to health were seen significantly associated with current cigarette smoking among adolescents.

The burden of tobacco use in any form among adolescents is unacceptably high and exposure to environmental tobacco exposure is widespread. Therefore the government of Ethiopia should legislate, enact, and enforce laws that control tobacco spread in any form. Moreover adolescents of the country should be enriched with the knowledge on the dangers of tobacco use.