Sahel Medical Journal

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Exposure to and risk awareness of environmental tobacco smoke among undergraduates of the University of Ilorin, Nigeria.

AE Fawibe, AO Shittu


Background: Many students in higher institutions tend to be exposed to environmental tobacco smoke. This work was designed to survey the exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and awareness of the
dangers associated with it among undergraduates of university of Ilorin.
Method: It was a cross-sectional study among undergraduates of the University of Ilorin, Kwara State in Nigeria.
Results: The overall rate of self-reported regular environmental tobacco smoke exposure was 48.6%. Exposure was significantly higher in males than females. It was commonest at homes/hostels 473 (59.9%), followed by viewing centres 376 (47.7%) and bars/restaurants 288 (36.5%). Two hundred and twenty-one (95.3%) medical students and 1221 (85.9%) non medical students (ƒÓ2=11.80, p=0.001) think that environmental tobacco smoke exposure was harmful to them. Most of the students think that active smoking can cause lung cancer, heart diseases, erectile problems and stroke in smokers but on the contrary, they did not think that environmental tobacco smoke exposure can cause these diseases in
non smokers. Majority of the students 221 (95.3%) medical students and 1275 (89.7%) non medical students support ban on smoking in the public places.
Conclusion: Many of the students who were regularly exposed to environmental tobacco smoke did not know that it can result in fatal diseases.

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