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Prevalence of khat chewing and factors affecting it among addis ababa university, selale campus students 2016

Author: 
Abdisa Boka
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Background: Khat (Catha edulis) is a flowering shrub, native to the region extending from Eastern to South Africa, as well the Arabian Peninsula. The plant is seedless and hardy, growing in a variety of climates and soils. The taste is astringent and slightly sweet. khat chewing habit was started in the 15th century, just before the start of use of coffee. The crop now grows well at higher altitudes of Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula where khat chewing has a long history as social custom dating back thousands of year. The harm from Khat has been debated globally. Khat affects both peripheral and central nervous system. The use of Khat results to significant negative psychological, physiological and sociological impact on compulsive users. Objectives: To assess the Prevalence of khat use and its associated factors among Addis Ababa University, Selale campus students in 2016. Methods: School based cross-sectional survey was conducted from November 25 to May19, 2016 on 220 students from selale campus, Ethiopia. Data was collected using pre-tested structured facilitator guided self-administered questionnaire. Stratified random sampling and simple random sampling technique was used to select students for the survey. Results: The study revealed 21.9% of life time prevalence rate of Khat chewing. There were 11.45% female Khat chewers and 30.7% male Khat chewers. A large proportion (39.1%) of chewers was started Khat chewing after joining university. Nearly two third 33(71.7%) of students among khat chewers have a monthly income greater than 500 birr (2.56(1.12, 3.43 at 95%CI) and more than half 24 (52.2 %) were from third year (2.21(1.20, 3.92 at 95%CI). Of the total khat chewer majority of them were located at age interval of 23-26 years (2.34(1.92, 4.53 at 95%CI). Conclusion: In the study area significant numbers of College students were chewing khat. The predominant factors associated with khat chewing were being male; families from urban area, peer pressure, parental and income specially have greater than 500 birr per month. The findings suggest the need to have audience specific behavioral change communication to avert and prevent khat chewing practice. Colleges and health bureau should design education about consequence of khat chewing for students, their parents and the community at large to bring behavioral change.

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