This article was originally written by Ben Adams
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Smoking is a global problem. It is estimated that one in three adults smoke, with over 1 billion people smoking worldwide. The majority of these smokers reside in countries on the low end to the middle of the socioeconomic spectrum. Of this majority, about 80% live in low and middle-income countries. The total number of smokers worldwide is expected to keep on increasing each year.
The worldwide popularity of tobacco use varies by social class, historical era, and culture. Historically, smoking had been a pastime of the rich. However, this trend has changed dramatically in recent decades. It appears that financially advantaged men in wealthier countries have been smoking less in recent times.
The World Health Organization has been studying smoking trends and statistical patterns across the globe and has uncovered the following statistics:
1) Eastern Europe has a particularly high rate of smoking, with up to 59% of adult males smoking. Also, significantly more women smoke in Eastern Europe than in East Asia and the Pacific Region.
2) Most people who smoke, begin smoking before they are 25 years old. Worldwide observations suggest that people are stating to smoke at a much younger age. World Health Organization studies reveal that the majority of smokers in affluent countries; begin in their teens.
Smoking In The US
How do Americans compare to the rest of the world when it comes to smoking? It may come as no surprise to hear that Americans are no better than anyone else. According to the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics:
3) In the US, it is estimated that 25.6 million men (25.2%) and 22.6 million women (20.7%) are smokers. These smokers face a higher risk of heart attack and stroke. Here are the latest estimates for smokers’ aged 18 and above:
4) Studies reveal that smoking popularity is significantly higher among people with 9-11 years of education (35.4%) compared with those with more than 16 years of education (11.6%).
5) There appears to be a correlation between a country’s standard of living, level of education, and income and the number of people who have quit smoking. The more and better-informed people are, the more likely they are to quit smoking.
6) People living below the poverty level (33.3%) are much more likely to start smoking.
7) Among whites, 25.1% of men and 21.7% of women smoke.
8) Among black or African Americans, 27.6% of men and 18% of women smoke.
9) Among Asians, 21.3% of men and 6.9% of women smoke.
10) Among Hispanics/Latinos, 23.2% of men and 12.5% of women smoke.
11) Among American Indians/Alaska Natives, 32% of men and 36.9% of women smoke.
12) A shocking…1 out of every 5 five deaths is caused by tobacco
13) It is estimated that Tobacco is responsible for 400,000 deaths in the US every single year.
14) Cigarettes are responsible for about 25% of deaths from residential fires, causing nearly 1,000 fire-related deaths and 3,300 injuries each year.
15) Tobacco is blamed for many serious cardiovascular and pulmonary diseases
16) Nicotine and tobacco are some of the most potent carcinogens and are responsible for the majority of all cancers of the lung, larynx, trachea, esophagus and bronchus.
17) Smoking tobacco is known to produce cancer in the pancreas, kidney, bladder, and the cervix
18) Because tobacco reduces blood flow, nicotine addiction has been proven to cause impotency.
19) If you smoke, the risk of respiratory illnesses is high. This could lead to pulmonary diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and pneumonia, which are responsible for some 85,000 every year.
20) Children and adolescents who are active smokers will have increasingly severe respiratory illness, as they grow older
21) Smoking during pregnancy increases the risk of miscarriage and fetal growth retardation. It also causes about 5-6% of prenatal deaths, 17-26% of low-birth-weight births, and 7-10% of pre-term deliveries.
If you don’t want to quit smoking after reading these shocking figures, you really need to get your head examined. You know in your heart, what’s the right thing to do. Make a firm decision to quit today, and stick to it!