Knowledge, Attitude and Practice of Tobacco Use and Its Impact on Oral Health Status of 12 and 15 Year-Old School Children of Chhattisgarh, India

  • Tiwari, Ram Vinod (Public Health Dentistry, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research) ;
  • Megalamanegowdru, Jayachandra (Public Health Dentistry, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research) ;
  • Gupta, Anjali (Conservative and Endodontics, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research) ;
  • Agrawal, Ankush (Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, New Horizon Dental College) ;
  • Parakh, Abhinav (Public Health Dentistry, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research) ;
  • Pagaria, Sulabh (Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research) ;
  • Sahu, Abhishek (Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, Rungta College of Dental Sciences and Research)
  • Published : 2015.01.06


Background: Tobacco is a leading preventable cause of deaths worldwide; the situation is particularly serious in the developing countries. Tobacco use amongst the children and adolescents is already a pandemic and they are vulnerable targets of tobacco industry. This is also the case in India. Objectives: 1) Document and monitor the prevalence of tobacco use including smoked, smokeless and other forms of tobacco; 2) Understand student knowledge and attitudes related to tobacco use and its health impact; 3) Assess the impact of tobacco on the oral health status of school-going children in India. Materials and Methods: The sample was 1,500 school children of the age group 12-15 years age. A pretested, close ended questionnaire was administered in the form of extensive face to face interview to understand student knowledge, attitudes and behavior related to tobacco use and its health impact and to assess the prevalence of tobacco use including smoked, smokeless and other forms of tobacco. Oral health status was assessed using the Community Periodontal Index (CPI). Frequency distribution, Chi-square tests and Odd's ratio was calculated. Results: Prevalence of tobacco usage amongst the prevalence was 20.4%: 9.2% reported smoking, 15.8% used tobacco in the chewable form and 25.3% children were involved in consuming betel nut/areca nuts. The OR (Odd's ratio) for calculus formation was highest for guthka chewers (OR=14.322), paan masala chewers had the highest odds of developing bleeding on probing when compared to the others. Conclusions: There is an urgent need to launch school-based tobacco prevention programs for community awareness of children and the public, as preventing the initiation of a habit is far easier than stopping it.


Tobacco;adolescents;India;betel nut;12-15 years;oral lesions;cancer


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