Friday, April 19, 2024

World No Tobacco Day: protecting young people from traditional tobacco products and electronic cigarettes


Since 1989, the World Health Organization (who) has set world No Tobacco Day as May 31 every year, because the next day is international children’s day, hoping that the next generation will be free from tobacco. May 31, 2020 is the 33rd World No Tobacco Day. The theme of this year’s World No Tobacco Day is “protect young people from traditional tobacco products and electronic cigarettes”. We will scientifically guide young people to establish a healthy concept of rejecting traditional tobacco products and electronic cigarettes. Taking the world No Tobacco Day as an opportunity, we will accelerate the construction of smoke-free environment and the process of smoke-free legislation, and effectively protect the health of young people. In order to realize the world’s smoke-free, there is no doubt that human beings need to reach a consensus on the fact that “smoking is not good” and “tobacco is a drug”.

Harmful components of tobacco

The smoke produced by tobacco combustion is a complex mixture of more than 7000 compounds, of which 95% are gases, such as carbon monoxide, hydrocyanide, volatile nitrosamine, and 5% are particulates, including semi volatile and non-volatile substances, such as tobacco tar and nicotine. Most of these compounds are harmful to human body, at least 69 of which are known carcinogens, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, nitrosamines, etc., and nicotine is the substance causing addiction. Nicotine is also a class a toxic substance. If it is injected intravenously, only 50 mg of nicotine can kill an adult.

Second hand smoke refers to smoke emitted from the burning end of cigarettes or other tobacco products, and is usually mixed with smoke emitted by smokers. Second hand smoke contains hundreds of known toxic or carcinogenic substances, including formaldehyde, benzene, vinyl chloride, arsenic, ammonia and hydrocyanic acid. Second hand smoke has been identified as a class a carcinogen. Compared with the smoke inhaled by smokers themselves, the concentration of many carcinogenic and toxic chemicals in second-hand smoke is higher.

Harm of tobacco to human body

Tobacco dependence is a chronic disease, and its harm is one of the most serious public health problems in the world

Lung cancer. Smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, and more than two-thirds of lung cancer deaths worldwide are caused by smoking. Exposure to secondhand smoke at home or in the workplace also increases the risk of lung cancer.

Chronic respiratory diseases. Smoking is the main cause of COPD. COPD refers to the accumulation of mucus filled with pus in the lung, resulting in painful cough and dyspnea. Because tobacco smoke significantly slows lung development, people who start smoking at a young age have a particularly high risk of COPD. Tobacco can also aggravate asthma, which limits activity and leads to disability.

Affect the whole life. Infants exposed to tobacco smoke toxins in the womb due to their mother’s smoking or exposure to second-hand smoke often experience lung growth and dysfunction. Children exposed to second-hand smoke are at risk of asthma, pneumonia and bronchitis, as well as frequent lower respiratory tract infections.

Tuberculosis. Tuberculosis will damage the lung and reduce lung function. Smoking will further weaken lung function. The lung health damage caused by smoking will aggravate active tuberculosis, which greatly increases the risk of disability and death due to respiratory failure.

air pollution. Tobacco smoke is a very dangerous form of indoor air pollution. It contains more than 7000 chemicals, 69 of which are known to cause cancer. Although smoke may be invisible and tasteless, it can linger in the air for up to five hours, exposing those exposed to lung cancer, chronic respiratory disease, and reduced lung function.

Misunderstanding of tobacco cognition

There is a serious lack of public awareness of the hazards of smoking and second-hand smoke exposure. More than 3 / 4 of Chinese people cannot fully understand the health hazards of smoking, and more than 2 / 3 of Chinese people do not understand the hazards of second-hand smoke exposure.

Most of the public lack of understanding of the wrong idea that “low tar equals low harm”, and the higher education level, such as doctors, teachers and other groups have a higher proportion of this wrong understanding, which reflects that the public generally has a serious misunderstanding of this problem.

One of the important factors that hinder the control of smoking in China is the lack of public awareness of the harm of smoking to health and the widespread misunderstanding.

Benefits of quitting smoking

Tobacco can damage almost all organs of human body, and quitting smoking can effectively prevent or delay the progress of smoking related diseases. The study found that the risk of death in patients with coronary heart disease can be reduced by about half one year after quitting smoking, and it will continue to decrease with the extension of quitting smoking time. After quitting smoking for 15 years, the absolute risk of death in patients with coronary heart disease will be similar to that of never smokers. Quitting smoking and preventing second-hand smoke exposure are the most important means to prevent COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). Quitting smoking is proved to be an effective way to delay COPD The only way to reduce lung function is to quit smoking, and reduce the incidence rate and mortality of stroke, peripheral vascular disease, pneumonia and gastroduodenal ulcer. Therefore, quitting smoking is an important part of the treatment of various smoking related diseases. Quitting smoking can also reduce the risk of second-hand smoke exposure in the surrounding population, especially in families and colleagues.

Quitting smoking at all ages is beneficial, and “early quitting is better than late quitting, and quitting is better than not quitting”. No matter when you quit smoking, you can gain a longer life expectancy after quitting. Compared with continued smokers, quitters have fewer diseases and disabilities.

Quitting smoking has significant economic benefits, which can greatly reduce the medical costs caused by smoking.

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