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Knowledge, attitude, prevalence and factors leading to smoking among students of the Center for Physical Education and Sports Science, University of Sindh, Jamsoro, Pakistan
The objective of this study was to determine the knowledge, attitude, prevalence and factors leading to smoking among students at the Center for Physical Education and Sports Science, University of Sindh, Jamsoro Pakistan. A total of 148 (128 males and 20 females) students of Center for Physical Education and Sports Science were randomly selected. A self-administered questionnaire was used to elicit information on demographics, smoking habits, attitude towards public action against smoking and knowledge of health hazards. Smoking was more common among bachelors (n=18) than master’s degree students (n=04). There were 22 smokers, but most of them were occasional smokers (n=13). All female students indicated that they never smoked. The students’ ages ranged from 18-35 years (mean age 22. 3 + 9.37 years). Sixteen students started smoking between ages 10-20 years. Out of 22 smokers, only five were heavy smokers (>20 cigarettes/d). The most favoured smoking tool was filter tipped cigarettes (n=12). The most common reason for smoking was peer pressure (n=12). Majority of students (n=53) who do not smoke believed that it is a useless habit. Twelve smokers and 112 non-smokers favoured banning smoking advertisements in print and electronic media. Fourteen smokers and all non-smokers favored banning smoking at public places. Both smokers (91%) and non smokers (98%) had good knowledge of health hazards associated with smoking and passive smoking. Smoking still constitutes a major problem among university students inspite of their knowledge of its hazards. This may be due to the addictive effect of smoking, peer pressure, negative parental attitudes and other reasons. There is a need to implement an anti-smoking programme for college students in order to educate them on the health implications of smoking, thereby possibly preventing or controlling smoking among the students.