The prevalence of secondhand smoke exposure among women and children in the deep South of Thailand
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Prince of Songkla University, Health System Management Institute, Thailand
Prince of Songkla University, Epidemiology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Thailand
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A374
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In lower-middle income countries, women and children are vulnerable populations that are regularly susceptible to secondhand smoke (SHS) exposure in their own private residences. In Thailand, the highest smoking rate has consistently demonstrated for two decades in the Deep South that related to cultural-specific of tobacco product use. The purpose of this survey was to describe the prevalence of exposure to SHS among women and children at homes in the 5 southernmost provinces of Thailand.

A descriptive cross-sectional household survey using 2-stage random sampling was conducted in April-May, 2015 to those among people aged 12 years and over in Satun, Songkhla, Pattani Yala, and Narathiwas province. Both self-report and face to face questionnaires containing socio-demographic characteristics, household characteristics and smoking status at home were used to evaluate the SHS on 4,500 households and 4,515 individual samples.

The prevalence of current tobacco use and SHS in their homes were 33.38% and 73.40%, respectively. All of tobacco smokers were male that commonly smoked at homes in every day (35.34%), every other day (5.19%) and twice a week (2.69%). On the other hands, non-tobacco smoke persons living with those smokers in the same houses were mainly women and children that exposed to SHS every day (31.05 %). In addition, both groups were exposed to SHS by community members and smoking neighbors who always came to smoke inside their homes (29.89%).

This study indicates that women and children are at highly increased of health risks from SHS exposure at their own homes. This finding will be contributed to motivate the development of tobacco control policy advocacy and specific properly interventions for smoke-free homes in accordance with socio-cultural context in the Deep South of Thailand.