Female Tobacco Users: Causative Factors and their Perception about Tobacco health hazards
Keywords:Female tobacco user, kinds of tobacco, causative factors, health hazards, perceptions, beliefs
AbstractBackground: Tobacco use is becoming an epidemic in both sexes in Pakistan includingNWFP.Objective: To determine the factors leading to tobacco use among female tobacco users and to gain insight into their perception about tobacco related health hazards.Methods: A cross-sectional survey among female tobacco users. The sample was consecutive and informations were collected through a structured questionnaire via face to face interview.Results: Total of 89 female tobacco users were interviewed . The mean age of study population was 54.6% 13 yrs (range: 28-85).Out of 89, 91% were married,71% were housewives,76% were uneducated, 65% were current tobacco users, 35% ex-tobacco users and 46% had a family income of less than Rs. 5000/ month. Cigarette smokers were 25%, snuff users 66% whereas 8% had used huqqa. Sixty six percent of the educated females with family income of more than Rs. 10,000/ month were using cigarette whereas snuff use was more commonly in the uneducated females. Forty eight percent started using tobacco as a treatment for their medical illness whereas 15% stated that their husband's pursuation was a major factor for starting the tobacco use. Despite the fact that 64% were suffering from different tobacco related health problems, more than50%of the study population respectively disagreed with the statements such as; that tobacco causes cancer, breathing problems, teeth and gum problems, related to asthma, its use in public place is hazardous for non-users and cigarette smoke is injurious to health of pregnant women. Eighty four percent were unable to recall any reason for starting tobacco use but 61% of the study population was willing to quit this habit.Conclusion: There is a lot of misconception about tobacco usefulness in certain medical conditions and the knowledge about tobacco related health hazards among female tobacco users is very low.