Teenagers of lower socioeconomic status are more likely to take up smoking than their more affluent counterparts, finds a study from Ghana.

Those teens in the study who are expected to end up in adulthood in a lower socioeconomic status than their families (downwardly mobile) are more likely to use tobacco than those teens who are stable in the high socioeconomic status.

Health promotion and tobacco control strategies aimed at reducing teen smoking should pay attention to adolescents of lower socioeconomic statuses and those in danger of dropping out of school, the study concludes.

1. Doku D, Koivusilta L, Raisamo S. Do socioeconomic differences in tobacco use exist also in developing countries? A study of Ghanaian adolescents. BMC Public Health 2010; 10: 758. (open access)