Background: Tobacco smoking is a growing public health problem in the developing world. The health hazards of smoking are well documented and prevention of smoking has been described as the single greatest opportunity for preventing non-communicable disease in the world today.
Method: A cross-sectional survey was carried out to determine the cigarette smoking Knowledge, attitude and smoking behaviour among University of Ibadan students in western Nigeria. One hundred and ninety five (195) university students were selected from seven faculties of the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, through multistage sampling method. Data collected was analyzed using descriptive statistics, t-test and Pearson Product Moment correlation.
Result: Participants responded to a tobacco, knowledge, attitude and behaviour scale, with a reliability coefficient of 0.78. Their age ranged between 18 to 35 years; 135 male (69.2%), and 60 females (30.8%) participated in the study, with 71 (36.4%) married and 124 (63.6%) single. The largest group of smokers was influenced to start smoking by the influence of one or both parents, siblings, or friends, and only 1% of this group was influenced by their mothers, when buying cigarette for teachers and others. Most respondents continued to smoke even when they were aware of the health hazards of smoking. There were significant differences between smokers and non-smokers knowledge, attitude and smoking behaviour (P<0.05). Furthermore, there was significant linear relationship between knowledge of negative consequences and negative attitude to tobacco smoking (P<0.05).
Conclusion: This study recommends that anti-tobacco education and awareness should be adopted in the curriculum of schools and colleges. All forms of tobacco advertising and promotional activities should be banned in Nigeria, and parents should be encouraged to adopt more responsible attitudes toward smoking in their homes.