Using effective health promotion interventions to reduce attractiveness for tobacco smoking among school students in Sri Lanka
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Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, Sri Lanka
Save the Children, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Child protection authority, Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, Sri Lanka
W.G Nadeesha Sewwandi   

Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, Mihintale, Sri Lanka
Publication date: 2021-09-02
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A276
Majority of lifelong smokers begin smoking habits during school age. School years makes a critical time for tobacco companies to convince school students to pick up the habit of cigarette smoking.

This study aimed to empower school students using health promotion approach to avoid smoking by reducing attraction for tobacco consumption.

This study was carried out in a secondary mix school namely Walisinghe Harischandra MahaVidyalaya in Sri Lanka. Using simple random sampling method; the authors selected four grade seven classes included a total of 209 students. Using group activities, video clips, success stories discussed about short term harmful effects, sexual impotence, and passive smoking. They were guided to discuss about determinants effect for tobacco smoking among students and they prioritized determinants to address. Incorrect attitudes about smoking among students, company strategies were some determinants chose to address. Then discussed with them about false expectations and behaviors, incorrect symbolic meanings, and negative image on non user and further discussed about company strategies which promote smoking near schools, in schools and in media. Data were collected using focus group discussions according to a guideline and qualitative and quantitative methods were used to analyze the changes.

Knowledge on harmful effects of smoking and company strategies were improved among students. And 73% of students were identified methods of company strategies and 65% started to write them in innovative tools called ‘media book’. They disseminated their knowledge and experience with collogues, family, and children societies. At the beginning 52.4% identified smokers as heroes, 9.6% don’t care about smoking, 38% identified smoking as a stupid behavior but after the interventions and activities all students (100%) thought smoking as a stupid behavior.

Using effective health promotion approach, the attraction for tobacco smoking among school students can be reduced.