Prevalence and Predictors of Tobacco Use Among Adolescents in Ibadan, Nigeria

Ikenna Onoh, MBBS, MSc, Magbagbeola David Dairo, MBBS, MSc, Muhammad Shakir Balogun, MBBS, MPH, Olufunmilayo Fawole, PhD, MBBS

Introduction: Most tobacco use begins in adolescence, causing dependence and prolonged use, and accounts for more than 8 million deaths worldwide annually. Monitoring adolescent tobacco use is critical to controlling it. Our study examined the prevalence and factors associated with tobacco use among adolescents in Nigeria.

Methods: We conducted a descriptive cross-sectional study among adolescent students in Ibadan, Nigeria, aged 11 to 18 years, from March through June 2021. We used a 2-stage cluster design to select 3,199 students from 23 schools. We adapted the Global Youth Tobacco Survey Core Questionnaire, version 1.2, for data collection and used logistic regression to assess factors associated with current tobacco use. We weighted all analyses for complex survey design and differential nonresponse at school, class, and student levels.

Results: Prevalence of current use of cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, or any tobacco were 1.4%, 1.1%, and 2.0%, respectively. Predictors of current tobacco use were male sex (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 3.13; 95% CI, 1.53-6.42); close friends as smokers (aOR = 3.10; 95% CI, 1.77-5.41); classmates as smokers (aOR = 3.12; 95% CI, 1.15-8.49); access to cigarette (aOR = 6.65; 95% CI, 2.55-17.33); perception that smoking is attractive (aOR = 3.15; 95% CI, 1.17-8.44); exposure to secondhand smoke (aOR = 2.93; 95% CI, 1.07-8.03); and internet awareness of tobacco use (aOR = 3.22; 95% CI, 1.48-7.04).

Conclusion: Prevalence of adolescent tobacco use was low in Ibadan. Predictors were peer influence, access to cigarettes, misperceptions about tobacco use, exposure to secondhand smoke, and tobacco advertising. We recommend an antitobacco campaign that uses a peer education strategy, a comprehensive enforcement of tobacco advertising, and a ban on public smoking.