Smoking has been proven to be bad for health, causing a string of diseases such as cardiovascular disease, lung illness, and cancer. In the 2020 Surgeon General report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on tobacco, people are discouraged from smoking to live a healthier life but are also advised not to resort to vaping. Image Credit: Africa Studio / Shutterstock
Three decades after the first Surgeon General’s report on smoking cessation, the Surgeon General, Vice Adm. Jerome M. Adams, has released a new report that provides updated evidence on the benefits of smoking cessation.
Tobacco smoking is the leading cause of preventable disease, disability, and death in the country, and it harms nearly every organ, costing billions of dollars in direct medical costs every year.
Though there has been considerable progress to reduce cigarette smoking since the first Surgeon General’s report in 1964, 13.7 percent of people or nearly 34.2 million people were still smoking in 2018. In the report, they found that more than two-thirds of adults in the United States are smoking cigarettes.
In 2017, a majority of smokers want to quit completely. But, one of the major reasons why people find it hard to quit smoking is nicotine, a drug naturally found in tobacco, which is highly addictive. Major conclusions
In a press conference, the Surgeon General, Dr. Adams, reiterated the important role of doctors in helping patients quit.
“Forty percent of smokers who see a health provider each year isn't advised by those health providers to quit," Adams said.
Doctors should advise patients about quitting smoking, particularly for health reasons. Smoking cessation reduces the risk of premature death and can add about a decade to one’s life expectancy. It also helps reduce the likelihood of experiencing negative health effects, such as cardiovascular disease, reproductive health outcomes, chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (COPD), and some types of cancer.
“We know more about the science of quitting than ever before. As a nation, we can and must do more to ensure that evidence-based cessation treatments are reaching the people that need them," Dr. Adams, said in a statement.
"Today, I'm calling on healthcare professionals, health systems, employers, insurers, public health professionals, and policymakers to take action to put an end to the staggering—and completely preventable—human and financial tolls that smoking takes on our country,” he added. The era of e-cigarettes
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