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      Current smoking behaviour among rural South African children: Ellisras Longitudinal Study

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          The use of tobacco products is the major cause of chronic diseases morbidity and mortality. Most smokers start the smoking habits from childhood and adolescent stages.


          This was a cross-sectional study. A total of 1654 subjects (854 boys and 800 girls), aged 11 to 18 years, who were part of the Ellisras Longitudinal Study completed the questionnaire. Association between tobacco products use and habits, attitudes and beliefs were explored in this study. Logistic regression was used to estimate the association.


          The prevalence of tobacco product use increases with increasing (4.9 to 17.1%) age among boys whereas girls do not smoke cigarette but only considerable number (1.0 to 4.1%) use home made tobacco products (pipe and snuff) among the Ellisras rural children. Parents and grand parents play a significant (about 50%) role in influencing smoking behaviour among the Ellisras rural children. Seeing actors smoking on TV shows was positively associated (p < 0.05) with smoking (OR = 2.3 95%CI (1.3-4.1 and OR = 2.3 95%CI 1.3-4.1 after adjusting for age and gender). However, women who smoke cigarette were significantly (p < 0.001) associated with success and success and wealth (OR = 2.8, 95% CI 1.5-5.2) even after adjusting for age and gender (OR = 2.9 95% CI 1.5-5.4).


          The usage of tobacco products was high among older boys. Girls did not smoke cigarette. This tobacco use behaviour mirrors the cultural norms and adult behaviour. The association of this tobacco used products with biological parameters will shed more light on the health of these children over time.

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          Most cited references 23

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          A descriptive model of the cigarette epidemic in developed countries

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            Tobacco use by youth: a surveillance report from the Global Youth Tobacco Survey project.

            The Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) project was developed by the World Health Organization and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to track tobacco use among youth in countries across the world, using a common methodology and core questionnaire. The GYTS is school based and employs a two-stage sample design to produce representative data on smoking among students aged 13-15 years. The first stage consists of a probabilistic selection of schools, and the second consists of a random selection of classes from the participating schools. All students in the selected classes are eligible for the survey. In 1999, the GYTS was conducted in 13 countries and is currently in progress in over 30 countries. This report describes data from 12 countries: Barbados, China, Costa Rica, Fiji, Jordan, Poland, the Russian Federation (Moscow), South Africa, Sri Lanka, Ukraine (Kiev), Venezuela, and Zimbabwe. The findings show that tobacco use in the surveyed age group ranged from a high of 33% to a low of 10%. While the majority of current smokers wanted to stop smoking, very few were able to attend a cessation programme. In most countries the majority of young people reported seeing advertisements for cigarettes in media outlets, but anti-tobacco advertising was rare. The majority of young people reported being taught in school about the dangers of smoking. Environmental tobacco smoke exposure was very high in all countries. These results show that the GYTS surveillance system is enhancing the capacity of countries to design, implement, and evaluate tobacco prevention and control programmes.
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              Smoking and death: the past 40 years and the next 40.

               R. Peto (1994)

                Author and article information

                BMC Pediatr
                BMC Pediatrics
                BioMed Central
                23 June 2011
                : 11
                : 58
                [1 ]Department of Educational Studies, University of Limpopo, Sovenga, South Africa
                [2 ]Chronic Disease of lifestyle unit, Medical Research Council, Tygerberg, 7505, South Africa
                [3 ]VU University Medical Centre, The Institute for Health and Care Research (EMGO+), Amsterdam, the Netherlands
                Copyright ©2011 Mashita et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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