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Substance use among adolescent higher secondary school students in bhaktapur district in nepal

Authors:Chandra Shova Khaitu, Reesha Joshi*
Int J Biol Med Res. 2012; 3(4): 2515-2522  |  PDF File


Background: Though the global burden of substance use is rising in developing countries like Nepal, the age of initiation is progressively falling. Use of substances by adolescents is harmful to the nation. Aim: This study aims is to determine the prevalence, biosocial determinants, attitudes and perception among adolescent students regarding substance use. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 392 higher secondary level (10+2) students in Bhaktapur, from August to November 2011. A structured questionnaire was used to collect data from a community school, a public school and a private school respectively. Epi Data version 3.1 and Microsoft Excel 2007 were used to enter data and SPSS 16.0 version was used in analysis, by both descriptive and inferential statistics. Results: Overall prevalence rate of substance use was 34.88%. About 22% had tried cigarettes and 7.9% had tried smokeless tobacco products. About 22.6% consumed alcohol and 14.1% had tried illicit drugs. The mean age of initiating tobacco was 12.96 (SD=3.142). Being male was strongly associated with substance use than female (OR = 7.314, 95% CI = 4.553 to 11.749). Students who had substance users among their family and friends were more likely to use them. Substance use was more in private schools and was statistically significantly (P value 0.028). Conclusion: The study reveals that three out of every ten adolescent is a substance user. The identification of the magnitude and influencing factors can improve scope for planning and preventive anti-substance use approaches for this vulnerable group.