1 School of Public Health, Wolaita Sodo University, Wolaita Sodo, Ethiopia
2 School of Public Health, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Small sized child at birth is associated with household fuel use particularly from biomass fuel type. Household air pollution is believed to affect the fetus directly through trans-placental exposure or indirectly by adversely impacting birth outcome which resulted from a small-sized child at birth. It is an important predictor of children's health and is associated with higher risk of infant and child mortality due to various contributing factors. This study ascertained the association between household fuel types, kitchen characteristics and house structure with child size at birth in Wolaita Sodo, Southern Ethiopia.
A cross-sectional study among 1042 mothers paired with their child aged between 0-59 months was employed. Participants were selected using systematic random sampling from 6 Kebeles. The size of a child at birth was determined based on the mother’s report. Data were entered using Epi Data version 3.1 and analyzed using SPSS version 21.
The prevalence of small size at birth was 16.3%, (95% CI 14.2%-18.6%). Children were relatively equally distributed by age. The mean age of the children was 23.74 ± 14.93 months. Sixty-one percent of households used charcoal followed by biomass fuel (23.4%) for cooking activities. About 322 (30.9%) houses had one room, 504 (48.4%) houses had one door and 431 (41.4%) houses had only one window. Biomass fuel type (AOR, 3.83, 95% CI, 1.95-15.35), cooking place inside the house (AOR, 2.27, 95% CI 1.88-5.88, house without window, (AOR, 4.79, 95% CI 1.56-14.69), time spent for three or more hours in cooking, (AOR, 2.45, 95% CI 1.16-5.21) were significantly associated with child size at birth.
Small size child at birth is still the concern of the study area. Using biomass fuel, cooking inside the house, more time spent in cooking and houses without window were determinants. Therefore, we recommend to the concerned stakeholders to work on clean fuel technologies and improving house designs to assuage related problems.
Keywords: Child size at birth, Birth weight, Fuel type, Stove type, Housing structure, Kitchen characteristics, Cooking place, Time spent in cooking, HAP Exposure, Ventilation.
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