Associations of cigarette smoking and close friendship with ever had sexual intercourse among school-going adolescents in Mauritania (pp. 299-304)
Authors: David Mulenga, Mazyanga L Mazaba-Liwewe, Olusegun Babaniyi, and Seter Siziya
Abstract: There are undesirable consequences of early commencement of sexual activity among adolescents which include human immunodeficiency virus infection and unwanted pregnancy. The objective of the study was to determine associations of cigarette smoking and close friendships with ever having had sexual intercourse among school-going adolescents in Mauritania. Secondary analysis of 2010 Mauritania Global School-based Health Survey data was conducted. Associations were established using weighted logistic regression analysis. A total of 2,063 students participated in the survey of which 43.5% were males. A third (33.2%) of students reported ever had sexual intercourse. Compared to female adolescents, males were 15% (AOR=1, 15, 95% CI [1.13, 1.17]) more likely to report having had sexual intercourse. Overall, adolescents who smoked cigarettes were more likely (AOR=2.01, 95% CI [1.96, 2.06]) to report having had sexual intercourse compared to non-smokers. Having close friends was negatively associated with sexual intercourse (AOR=0.64, 95% CI [0.62, 0.67]). Future work is needed to develop and employ measures that would prevent early sexual intercourse using the factors identified in the current study.