More girl students than boys use tobacco in state

Majority users, smokers ruralites, reveals global survey

More girl students than boys use tobacco in state

A vendor sells tobacco products against norms in Ludhiana.

Nitin Jain

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 29

More girl students than boys, in the age group of 13 to 15 years, use and smoke tobacco in the state, the Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS-4), a component of the Global Tobacco Surveillance System (GTSS), has revealed.

About the survey

Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) is a cross-sectional, nationally representative school-based survey of students in grades associated with 13 to 15 years of age. It uses a standard core questionnaire, sample design and data collection protocol. It assists countries in fulfilling their obligations under the World Health Organisation (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) to generate comparable data within and across countries.

Also, the majority of students using and smoking tobacco in the state were from rural areas.

These startling revelations were made in the GYTS-4, a global standard for systematically monitoring youth tobacco use (smoking and smokeless) and tracking key tobacco control indicators, conducted by the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.

According to the survey report, a copy of which is with The Tribune, showed that 5.7 per cent students, including 6 per cent girls and 5.4 per cent boys, currently used any tobacco products while 5.3 per cent students, comprising 5.8 per cent girls and 4.8 per cent boys, currently smoked tobacco in the state.

Of the total tobacco user students, 6.8 per cent were from rural areas and 3 per cent were urbanites. Similarly, the tobacco smokers comprised 6.6 per cent ruralites and 2.2 per cent were from urban areas.

However, when it came to smoking cigarettes, 3.6 per cent students were among the smokers, of which 3.9 per cent were boys and 3.2 per cent were girls. These comprised 4.7 per cent from rural areas and 0.8 per cent urbanites.

The students who currently smoked bidi were 2.9 per cent, of which 3.5 per cent were boys and 2.3 per cent were girls. These included 3.9 per cent ruralites and 0.7 per cent from urban areas.

But when it came to currently using smokeless tobacco, girl students again outnumbered boys. Of the total 1.4 per cent such smokers, 1.4 per cent were girls and 1.3 per cent boys. These comprised 1.5 per cent from rural areas and 0.9 per cent urbanites.

The students, who ever used tobacco, were 12.3 per cent, of which 12.9 per cent were boys, 11.7 per cent girls, 13.9 per cent ruralites and 8.5 per cent were from urban areas.

Of the 8.2 per cent ever tobacco smoker students, 8.4 per cent were boys and 7.9 per cent girls, of which 9.2 per cent were from rural areas and 5.6 per cent urbanites.

The number of ever cigarette user students was 4.8 per cent, of which 5.1 per cent were boys, 4.4 per cent girls, 6.2 per cent ruralites and 1.3 per cent were from urban areas.

Of the total 3.7 per cent ever bidi user students, 4.5 per cent were boys, 2,8 per cent girls, 4.8 per cent were from rural areas and 1 per cent were urbanites.

The smokeless tobacco user students were 7.2 per cent, of which 8 per cent were boys, 6.2 per cent girls, 8.7 per cent were ruralites and 3.6 per cent were from urban areas.

Another category in which the girls outnumbered boy students was those who ever used paan masala together with tobacco. Of the total 1.6 per cent such users, 2.5 per cent were girls, 0.9 per cent boys, 2 per cent were from rural areas and 0.9 per cent were urbanites.

WHO’s MPOWER

WHO has developed MPOWER, a technical package of selected demand reduction measures contained in its FCTC. It comprised monitoring of tobacco use and prevention policies, protection of people from tobacco smoke, offers help to quit tobacco use, warns about dangers of tobacco, enforces bans on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship and raise taxes on tobacco.

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