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Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 2008 Aug 28;128(16):1808-11.

[Cigarette smoking, use of snuff and other risk behaviour among students].

[Article in Norwegian]

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Statens institutt for rusmiddelforskning (SIRUS) Postboks 565 Sentrum 0105 Oslo.



Different prevalences of cigarette smoking and use of snus between University students and non-students, may supply us with information about the diffusion stage of the epidemic. User characteristics and involvement in other risk behaviour influences their status as diffusion agents.


1 655 students at the University of Oslo responded to a postal questionnaire about their tobacco, alcohol and drug use, gambling habits, physical activity and incidence of anxiety and depression. Data on tobacco habits of similarly aged youth outside University were obtained from Statistics Norway.


The response rate was 57 %. The proportion of daily smokers was significantly lower among students (men [10 %], women [9.6 %]), than among non-students (men [27 %], women [28 %]). The proportion of snuff users (daily + occasionally) for women was almost three times higher among students (12 %) than non-students (3.8 %). For men the results were different (28 % snuff users among students and 33 % among non-students). The quit-rate for smoking among students was higher for daily (46 %) and former users (61 %) of snus, than among students who had not used snus (34 %). Cigarette smoking increased with drug abuse, alcohol consumption, physical inactiveness, reduced mental health, and absence of parity. Use of snus was a typical male phenomenon, and increased with alcohol consumption and drug abuse.


The diffusion of the snus epidemic seems to be in an early stage for women, while for men it may already have reached a level of maturity. The high proportion of previous smokers among snus users, indicates that snus may affect the prevalence and frequency of smoking in a population. Groups with a low social impact seem to have a higher prevalence of smokers, both in general and among students, while the opposite is the case for snus users.

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