Globally, 31st May is celebrated as the ‘Smoke free Day’ or World No Tobacco Day or ‘No Smoking Day’. Whereas in India, the ‘Smoke free Day’ is observed on Second Wednesday of March every year.
World No Tobacco Day
On this day, many awareness programs, initiatives, workshops, events etc are conducted at several touch points right from villages, towns, cities, districts to highly developed nations across the world to make smokers know about the effects of smoking and health problems raised due to smoking. Research conducted by GfK NOP found that 1 in 10 smokers quit on No Smoking Day.
Tobacco Effects – Stats so far
According to a global study, it is estimated that more than one in 10 deaths globally was caused due to smoking in 2015 and over 50 per cent of them took place in just four countries, one of which was India.
More than 11 per cent of 6.4 million deaths worldwide was caused by smoking in 2015 and 52.2 per cent of them took place in China, India, USA, and Russia, according to the latest estimates in the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study published in medical journal The Lancet.
India, China, and Indonesia, the three leading countries with male smokers, accounted for 51·4 per cent of the world’s male smokers in 2015.
India has 11·2 per cent of the world’s total smokers.
Deaths attributable to smoking increased by 4.7 per cent in 2015 compared with 2005 and smoking was rated as a bigger burden on health — moving from third to second highest cause of disability, the study said.
The estimates are based on smoking habits in 195 countries and territories between 1990 and 2015, and illustrate that smoking remains a leading risk factor for death and disability.
The study’s say that with increasing and ageing populations already heightening the burden of tobacco, it will be crucial to support more smokers in quitting and stopping people from starting to smoke. “The India, China and USA, which were the leading three countries in total number of female smokers, accounted for only 27.3 per cent of the world’s female smokers,”
While Bangladesh, Indonesia, and the Philippines did not have significant reductions in male prevalence of daily smoking since 1990, the Philippines, Germany, and India had no significant decreases in smoking among women.
The authors of the study warned the war against tobacco is far from won, and argued that despite implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in 2005, policy makers need to make renewed and sustained efforts to tackle it.
Worldwide, between 1990 and 2015, smoking prevalence decreased by almost a third—from 29.4 per cent to 15.3 per cent—and currently one in four men (25 per cent) worldwide smoke, as do one in nearly 20 women (5.4 per cent). Despite these improvements, population growth has led to an increase in the overall number of smokers from 870.4 million in 1990 to 933.1 million in 2015, the study said.
The study said Pakistan, Panama and India stand out as three countries that have implemented a large number of tobacco control policies over the past decade and recorded marked declines in the prevalence of daily smoking since 2005, compared with decreases recorded between 1990 and 2005.
The study said the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), is necessary and vital for creating policy environment for more effective tobacco control worldwide but in not enough to fully address each country’s tobacco-control needs.
The nations will need to both implement FCTC-stipulated measures and supplement such policies and programmes with strong enforcement and high rates of compliance, it said.
“For example, India, where 11·2 per cent of the world’s smokers live, supplemented the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA) with the creation of a National Tobacco Control Programme (NTCP) in 2007.
“NTCP was created to strengthen implementation and enforcement of the various provisions of COTPA at the state and district level. It has been rolled out in phases and currently covers about 40 per cent of all districts in India”.
The 10 countries with the largest number of smokers in 2015 were China, India, Indonesia, USA, Russia, Bangladesh, Japan, Brazil, Germany and the Philippines.
Together they accounted for almost two—thirds of the world’s smokers (63.6 per cent), the study said.
“Despite more than half a century of unequivocal evidence of the harmful effects of tobacco on health, today, one in every four men in the world is a daily smoker.
“Smoking remains the second largest risk factor for early death and disability, and so to further reduce its impact we must intensify tobacco control (efforts)”.
Chewing Tobacco Effects
- Smoking causes some general adverse effects on the body, including inflammation and decreased immune function.
- Smoking affects the health of your teeth and gums and can cause tooth loss.
- Smoking can make it harder for a woman to become pregnant and can affect her baby’s health before and after birth.
- Smoking can also affect men’s sperm, which can reduce fertility and also increase risks for birth defects and miscarriage.
- Women who smoke also reach menopause earlier than women who don’t, according to researchers. Studies show that smokers reach menopause about one and half years earlier, on average, than non smokers. This is particularly true of women who smoked heavily for a long time.
Tobacco Consumption In India Statistics
India ranks second in the number of smokers around the world. Read all about the ill effects of smoking and how the body reacts after quitting. Cigarette consumption in India is rising more than ever. According to the BMJ Global Health journal, there are over 108 million male smokers in India and over 11 million female smokers.
China is the only country surpassing India in the number of adult smokers with over 300 million smokers.
- 72% smokers belonged to metros with Mumbai having the largest number of smokers.
- As per Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) – India 2016 survey, cigarette smokers form 11.7% of the adult population.
- 22% of the 1166 respondents’ smoke, of which 66% are regular smokers while the remaining smoke occasionally.
- 79% of the smokers smoke more than 1 cigarette a day, 27% of the smokers smoke about 2-5 cigarettes a day while about 22% of them smoke 5-10 cigarettes a day. The proportion of people smoking more than 10 cigarettes is 14%.
- ITC brands remain the first choice of the smokers being used by 68% of smokers. Classic Mild is the most smoked cigarette (18.6%), followed by Gold Flake Kings and Gold Flake Light (17.9% and 13.4% respectively). Godfrey Phillips is the second most preferred company with 14% of the people smoking its products i.e. Marlboro (13%) and Four Square (1%).
The main reason due to which people start smoking is curiosity (66% of smokers polled said so). Awareness among the people about the harmful effects of smoking has resulted in 39% smokers decreasing their cigarette consumption gradually over a period of 2-3 years. Still 40% of smokers maintained their consumption trend of smoking while 21% of smokers increased their consumption over a period of time.
Prevention of Smoking
- The mass media campaigns, comprehensive community programs, and comprehensive statewide tobacco control programs can prevent the initiation of tobacco use and reduce its prevalence among youth.
- The increases in cigarette prices reduce the initiation, prevalence, and intensity of smoking among youth and young adults.
- The school-based programs with evidence of effectiveness, containing specific components, can produce at least short-term effects and reduce the prevalence of tobacco use among school-aged youth.
Disadvantages of Smoking
1. There are immediate and long-term health benefits of quitting for all smokers.
Beneficial health changes that take place:
- Within 20 minutes, your heart rate and blood pressure drop.
- 12 hours, the carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal.
- 2-12 weeks, your circulation improves and your lung function increases.
- 1-9 months, coughing and shortness of breath decrease.
- 1 year, your risk of coronary heart disease is about half that of a smoker’s.
- 5 years, your stroke risk is reduced to that of a nonsmoker 5 to 15 years after quitting.
- 10 years, your risk of lung cancer falls to about half that of a smoker and your risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, cervix, and pancreas decreases.
- 15 years, the risk of coronary heart disease is that of a non smoker’s.
2. People of all ages who have already developed smoking-related health problems can still benefit from quitting.
Benefits in comparison with those who continued:
- At about 30: gain almost 10 years of life expectancy.
- At about 40: gain 9 years of life expectancy.
- At about 50: gain 6 years of life expectancy.
- At about 60: gain 3 years of life expectancy.
- After the onset of life-threatening disease: rapid benefit, people who quit smoking after having a heart attack reduce their chances of having another heart attack by 50%.
3. Quitting smoking decreases the excess risk of many diseases related to secondhand smoke in children.
Quitting smoking decreases the excess risk of many diseases related to secondhand smoke in children, such as respiratory diseases (e.g., asthma) and ear infections.
4. Others benefits.
Quitting smoking reduces the chances of impotence, having difficulty getting pregnant, having premature births, babies with low birth weights and miscarriage.
It is a belief system in the minds of the smokers that they cannot quit smoking or tobacco usage immediately or gradually, but the scientific studies say that it is possible to quit smoking and increase the span of your life. Hopefully, the above facts and figures may ignite the opinion of the smokers to stay away from usage of tobacco or smoking and lead a healthy living ahead.
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