Prevalence Of Areca Nut And Tobacco Use Among School Going Children In Gandhinagar, Gujarat
Prevalence Of Areca Nut And Tobacco Use Among School Going Children
Background: The habit of areca nut and tobacco chewing is prevalent among young children throughout India. Factors like easy availability, low cost, good taste have an impact on development of habit that can lead to precancerous and potentially malignant oral conditions, which is a great concern for the society and the government. Aim: To determine the prevalence of tobacco/areca nut chewing habits among school going children in Gandhinagar, Gujarat. Method: Self administered questionairres were distributed among 3590 students of government schools of Gandhinagar district. Data about their chewing habits was obtained. 1200 school children with age group of 6-15 years having the habit of areca nut chewing were included in the study. The data was subjected to statistical analysis. Result: The overall prevalence of areca nut/tobacco usage among school children was alarmingly high (32.15%). Children of 8-9 years exhibited highest (36.5%) involvement in areca nut/tobacco habit. 51% of the school children chewed areca nut/tobacco atleast once in a day. Majority of the children (70%) bought areca nut from shops nearby schools. 66.5% of the students were not aware of harmful effects of the chewing habits. Conclusion: In the current scenario, the biggest challenge is to make effective strategies to motivate young children not to initiate the habit and to create awareness among the society about potential health hazards of these substances. [Thakkar H. Natl J Integr Res Med, 2019; 10(6):61-65]
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.