ISSN : 2146-3123
E-ISSN : 2146-3131

The Influence of the Turkish Anti-Tobacco Law on Primary School Children in Edirne
Erhan Tabakoğlu 1, Tuncay Çağlar 1, Osman N. Hatipoğlu 1, Gündeniz Altıay 1, Ebru Çakır Edis 1, Necdet Süt 2
1Department of Chest Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Trakya University, Edirne, Turkey
2Department of Biostatistics, Faculty of Medicine, Trakya University, Edirne, Turkey
DOI : 10.5174/tutfd.2010.04408.2
Pages : 425-428


Objective: The Turkish anti-tobacco law was accepted and effectuated in 1996. All forms of cigarette advertising, the sale of tobacco products to persons under the age of 18 and smoking in public institutions were all restricted. In this paper, we aimed to evaluate the influence of the Turkish antitobacco law on children for the periods before the law, after three years and after 10 years.

Material and Methods: A self-completed questionnaire was distributed among primary school children. This included questions about the children's smoking habits, their opinions of parents' and teachers' smoking habits, tobacco use in public places and the recognition rate of 16 food, drink, cigarette and toothpaste logos and brand names. The first, second and third applications of the questionnaire were performed with students who attended the same classes in the same primary schools, accounting for 772 children in June 1996, 1,157 children in February 1999 and 719 children in June 2006.

Results: When these three periods were evaluated, it could be seen that the prevalence of having smoked significantly decreased (13.9%, 4%, 2.2%, p<0.001), as did the rate of purchasing cigarettes within the past week (36.6%, 29.1%, 15.8%, p<0.001). The disagreement with parents' and teachers' smoking habits and tobacco usage in public places increased significantly (p<0.001), while the recognition rates of some cigarette brand names and logos significantly decreased, specifically with regards to Marlboro, Camel and Samsun (p<0.001).

Conclusion: The Turkish anti-tobacco law has had a positive effect on primary school children in Edirne, and therefore could be a model for other countries.

Keywords : Anti-tobacco law, cigarette brand names and logos, smoking

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