Before you consider taking up cigarette or pipe smoking as a habit, have you ever wondered how smoking affects health and society on a global basis? Tobacco usage has currently reached global epidemic proportions, and individuals of all ages continue to light up in the face of all the negative press tobacco smoking gets. While many new smokers believe they can enjoy smoking in their youth and quit later, consider that smoking is a tough addiction to kick with numerous life-threatening health repercussions.
Hey, if you’re still not convinced, listing the benefits of quitting smoking habit won’t do much good. Instead, we’ve decided to let these cold, hard, and frightening smoking facts speak for themselves:
1. Cigarettes purchased, per day
On a global basis, approximately 10 million cigarettes are bought on a per minute basis—that equals roughly 15 billion cigarettes sold each day and five trillion cigarettes smoked annually.
2. Nicotine kills
Research conducted by the Archives of Toxicology claim that if consumed, 5 cigarettes contain sufficient nicotine to kill a healthy adult. Consider that a single cigarette contains 8 to 9 milligrams of nicotine. While a single cigar contains 100 to 400 milligrams of nicotine.
3. Aside from nicotine…
Even though nicotine is the chemical focus, more than 250 toxic chemicals exist in tobacco, 50 are considered “cancer-causing” (i.e., benzene, which causes acute myeloid leukemia) while 11 are carcinogenic (i.e., hydrogen cyanide) or radioactive (i.e., lead).
4. Smokers worldwide
Statistics from the WHO (the World Health Organization) estimate that 1.1 billion smokers currently exist globally, a number that’s estimated to spike to 1.6 billion by 2025.
5. U.S. smokers
Closer to home, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) report 37.8 million smokers currently, and 480,000 fatalities directly linked to smoking (that’s every 1 in 5 U.S. deaths).
6. Second hand smoking deaths
FYI, everyone who doesn’t smoke is still at risk of smoking related death when you figure 15% of fatalities (that’s 890,000 deaths) are due to secondhand smoke exposure.
7. Smoking costs everyone
On an economical level, tobacco smoking is expensive for everyone, even non-smokers. Consider that smoking costs the U.S. economy as a whole over $170 billion in medical costs and $156 billion in illness and death, a total of $300 billion dollars annually.
8. Tobacco-related illness
Currently, WHO reports 16 million cases of tobacco-related disease in the U.S., including:
- Coronary heart disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder)
- Pancreatic cancer
- Lung cancer
- Stomach cancer
- Cervical cancer
- Kidney/liver cancer
- Bladder cancer
- Cancer of the blood or bone marrow
- Esophageal/throat/larynx/mouth cancer
- Colon/rectum cancer
- AND so many more…
9. Smoking and depression
Numerous studies, including a major study from Yale University, have discovered a dangerous cycle between depression and smoking. Not only are depressed individuals more likely to start smoking to soothe depressive feelings—the very act of lighting up and smoking actually destroys neural pathways in the brain that regulate mood, therefore causing depression.