A lung cancer activist, Ruby Cartagena, recently offered to contribute an anti-smoking article to HelpWithCancer.org. I accepted gladly.
I don’t write about this topic much. I’m afraid I would start a long rant, railing against how crazy it is to smoke.
Cancer survivors like you and me work so hard to stay alive. Then I see people smoking–especially young people–and it tears-me-up inside!
See! Don’t get me started! Here is Ruby’s article:
Decline of Cigarette Smoking has Stalled, According to Recent Statistics
Here is some sad news. After years of declining smoking rates, the percentage of Americans who smoke has evened out. The National Health Interview Survey found that from 2005 to 2009, about 20 percent of U.S. adults smoked. Although this number is much lower than it was 30 years ago, the decline in smoking we saw from 1965 to 2005 has leveled off. Most, but not all, cases of lung cancer are due to tobacco use.
The study found 20.6 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 years or older reported smoking every day or some days in 2009. Men were found to be slightly more likely than women to be smokers, with statistics showing 23.5 percent of men and 17.9 percent of women reporting current use.
The study also sheds light on vast differences in smoking habits depending on education level. Smoking among individuals 25 years of age and older is estimated at 28.5 percent for individuals with less than a college degree. In comparison, the prevalence of smokers among those with a graduate degree is estimated at 5.6 percent.
Geographic differences were also identified. Southern and Midwest states have the highest percentage of smokers, at 21.8 percent and 23.1 percent, respectively. The West region of the U.S. boasts the lowest percentage of smokers, at 16.4 percent.
These findings indicate that more must be done to decrease our fellow citizens’ hazardous cigarette habits. The Centers for Disease Control experts offered these ideas to accelerate a decrease in smoking:
• Expanding access to smoking-cessation services and treatments
• Increased tobacco taxes
• Increased advertising to educate the public about the dangers of tobacco
Cigarette smoking continues to be one of most prevalent cause of preventable loss of life in America. It is estimated that 443,000 Americans die prematurely due to tobacco each year. Additionally, the CDC says health costs related to illnesses linked to tobacco cost $192 billion each year.
For more information on lung cancer, see http://www.lung-cancer.com/.
Thank you, Ruby! Please visit her site if you get a chance.
Feel good and keep smiling! Pat