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Tobacco and alcohol use among the youth of the agricultural tea industry in Assam, India.

Author information

1
Regional Medical Research Center, NE Region, Indian Council of Medical Research, Dibrugarh, Assam, India.

Abstract

A cross-sectional study was conducted to assess tobacco use (both smoking and non-smoked tobacco) and alcohol use among tea garden youths of Assam, India during the period 2002-2003. A total of 650 tea plantation youth age 15-24 years (255 males, 395 females) from eight randomly selected tea plantations, Dibrugarh District, Assam, were interviewed to collect information on alcohol and tobacco use using a pre-designed, pre-tested questionnaire. Nearly 59% of the respondents had no formal education. Fifty-eight percent of the youth used at least one substance and 27.4% were concurrent users of both alcohol and tobacco. The smoking rate was only 2.2% (4.7% in males, 0.5% in females). However, 52.5% of the study population used non-smoked tobacco (56.9% males, 49.6% females). The prevalence of alcohol consumption was 32.2% (43.9% males, 24.6% females). A higher rate of alcohol and tobacco use was found among the respondents who had no formal education or were school dropouts. A higher rate of alcohol and tobacco use were seen among respondents in whom both parents were illiterate. Working as a manual worker in the tea industry is significantly associated (p<0.01) with higher rates of alcohol and tobacco use. We recommend a vigorous campaign against tobacco and alcohol use among tea plantation youth to reduce the health risks associated with the use of these two substances.

PMID:
17120984
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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