The toxic effects of smoking have been known since the 1960s. In the US, anti-smoking efforts such as banning TV and radio tobacco advertising, launching public awareness campaigns about the dangers of smoking and restricting smoking in public areas, resulted in a decline in the number of smokers from 37.6 percent in 1955 to 20.8 percent in 2006. But years after the widespread decline of cigarette smoking, its usage has once again escalated.
Tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of death, killing one out of 10 people worldwide. If smoking prevalence were reduced, we could prevent 10 million premature deaths by 2030, according to the World Health Organisation.
But reality is that smoking has not reduced despite anti-smoking policies such as high tobacco taxes, robust public health campaigns and a ban on tobacco advertising in several countries.
The infographic below discusses the smoking stats among adults, kids and teens and also the deaths caused by smoking and tobacco use but limits itself mostly to the US. But perhaps the mind-boggling numbers below could stem the growing trend of smoking among youth and adults.
1. Smoking kills more people ever year than all deaths due to car accidents, suicide, Aids, alcohol, murders and illegal drugs combined. For instance, in US alone there are 443000 deaths every year just due to smoke. That’s over 1,200 deaths a day!! If this number is not scary enough, let me break it down further: Every eight seconds someone is dying from tobacco use.
2. What’s even scarier is the number of kids taking to smoking. The infographic shows that 80,000 to 1,00,000 children start smoking every single day while 20 percent of the teens between the age of 13-and 15 years smokes worldwide. In effect, every day there are 1,000 teenagers that start smoking. In fact, most adult smokers begin smoking as teenagers.
3.If current trends continue, cigarette companies are bound to target non-smoking populations too. Already 15 billion cigarettes are sold every day with 10 million being sold every minute. Research studies have found that kids are three times as sensitive to tobacco advertising than adults and are more likely to be influenced to smoke by cigarette advertising than peer pressure.
4. If you are a woman smoker, your chances of dying due to tobacco use is greater than men. However, the infographic fails to provide actual statistics on this one.
5. Even if you aren’t a smoker, but know one, you should worry since 38,000 deaths a year are caused due to second hand smoking or passive smoking. So essentially there are more than a 100 deaths a day from heart disease or cancer in people who are current non-smokers.
6.Smoking increases your risk of getting lung and heart diseases but the biggest threat is cancer. I am sure the healthcare costs caused due to smoking run into billions. But you probably need another infographic to decode those details.
Brought to you by: Health Watch Center