It has been 50 years since the announcement of the Surgeon General about the evils of smoking. And since then we have seen tobacco in a different light. An evil kind. Back then, the Surgeon General Luther L Terry said that smoking causes lung cancer. Now, we know that it is true. About 80 percent of lung cancer cases in America is caused directly or indirectly by tobacco smoke.
In the 50th anniversary of Terry’s report we now know more about smoking. Years have passed and countless studies showed us how evil and grimacing smoking can be. Today, smoking rates among adults have dropped from a high of 42 percent to 18 percent. Still, the smoking rate is high and has played in double-digits ever since. Getting the smoking rate down to 18 percent may be a good sign, but in reality 41 million Americans still smoke cigarettes. This translates to 400,000 deaths in America each year that could have been prevented. That is one every five deaths in the United States.
We now know that female smokers are at risk of lung cancer due to smoking. Scientists are certain that smoking can cause colorectal cancer. The report does not say, however, that smoking can cause breast cancer, but there are sufficient mechanisms to believe so. There is a very high probability that smoking can cause breast cancer. The changes in the design of cigarettes gave rise to new challenges to health issues that face modern-day smokers. It seems that today’s cigarettes have become more dangerous than ever before.
While science took great strides to find ways to help cancer patients. There is nothing better than to quit smoking to lower the risks of cancer. The cures that have been developed are cost-prohibitive and only the rich folks can afford the treatments. Health experts say that a simple act of smoking cessation can go a long way in preventing cancer from happening at the same time help the entire body recover from the ravage of poisons that a smoker puff into his or her body.
Doctors say that spending an insane amount of money to extend a person’s life for a few months is impractical. It would be more cost-effective and practical to do something that come in for free. It is better to quit smoking than to face the consequence of getting killed unnecessarily. The available chemotherapy that is available will not guarantee that a cancer patient will still live for years. There is no guarantee that the cancer will be gone. The only way to beat cancer is not to have it in the first place. And the best way to start is to stop smoking for good.
Then again, quitting smoking is a hard thing to do. Despite years of tobacco control, the smoking rate has remained in double-digits. In fact, in the estimate of the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, every day about 3,000 young folks are going to taste their first cigarettes. About 90 percent of the kids that would be smoking during their teens will become addicted to nicotine as they turn 21. It seems that prohibition of tobacco purchase among young people is not that strong enough to prevent smoking from escalating.
It is high time that people pay attention to the smoking status report. It is unfair to just sit back and do nothing as millions of people die from smoking around the world. The call to create an impact in smoking does not only impact the smokers, but other stakeholders as well. Healthcare providers, taxpayers and the general public have vested interests in pushing for better ways to prevent smoking from cutting loose.
We need to change the way the game is being played. We need to put in place measures that will ensure that future generations would no longer smoke like the way previous generations did. It is high time to put in place positive actions that can change the course of the world. We owe it to our children that they will live in a smoke-free world. A world that is free from tobacco. A world that is free from the horrors of preventable deaths.