Trying to quit smoking?  Click here to get information on quit smoking classes.

Smoking harms nearly every organ of the body. Smoking causes many diseases and reduces the health of smokers in general.

Each time you come to the OCHD, you may ask your nurse about tips on quitting. You will be given support, advice, and encouragement.

Click here to learn vital information about smoking and adult health from the Centers for Disease and Prevention.

Cigarette smoking is the number one cause of preventable disease and death worldwide. Smoking-related diseases claim over 393,000 American lives each year. Smoking cost the United States over $193 million in 2004, including $97 billion in lost productivity and $96 billion in direct health care expenditures, or an average of $4,260 per adult smoker.

Key Facts About Smoking

  • Cigarette smoke contains over 4,800 chemicals, 69 of which are known to cause cancer. Smoking is directly responsible for approximately 90% of lung cancer deaths and approximately 80-90% of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema) deaths.
  • Among adults who have ever smoked, 70% started smoking regularly at age 18 or younger and 86% at age 21 or younger.
  • Among current smokers, chronic lung disease accounts for 73% of smoking-related conditions. Even among smokers who have quit chronic lung disease accounts for 50% of smoking-related conditions.
  • Smoking harms nearly every organ in the body, and is a main cause of lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD, including chronic bronchitis and emphysema). It is also a cause of coronary heart disease, stroke and a host of other cancers and diseases.

Smoking Rates Among Adults & Youth

  • In 2009, an estimated 46.6 million, or 20.6% of adults (aged 18+) were current smokers.
  • Men tend to smoke more than women. In 2009, 23.5% of men currently smoked compared to 17.9% of women.
  • Prevalence of current smoking in 2009 was highest among non-Hispanic whites (22.2%) intermediate among non-Hispanic blacks (21.3%) and lowest among Hispanics (14.5%) and Asians (12.0%)
  • In 2009, 19.5% of high school students were current smokers. Over 5% of middle school students were current smokers in 2009.

Smoking During Pregnancy

  • Smoking during pregnancy accounts for an estimated 20 to 30 percent of low-birth weight babies, up to 14% of preterm deliveries, and some 10% of all infant deaths. Even apparently healthy, full-term babies of smokers have been found to be born with narrowed airways and reduced lung function.
  • In 2005, 10.7% of all women smoked during pregnancy, down almost 45% from 1990.
  • Neonatal health-care costs attributable to maternal smoking in the U.S. have been estimated at $366 million per year, or $704 per maternal smoker.

Facts about Quitting Smoking

  • Nicotine is the ingredient in cigarettes that causes addiction. Smokers not only become physically addicted to nicotine; they also link smoking with many social activities, making smoking an extremely difficult addiction to break.
  • In 2009, an estimated 49.9 million adults were former smokers. Of the 46.6 million current adult smokers, 46.7 percent stopped smoking at least 1 day in the preceding year because they were trying to quit smoking completely.
  • Quitting smoking often requires multiple attempts. Using counseling or medication alone increases the chance of a quit attempt being successful; the combination of using both is even more effective.
  • There are seven medications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to aid in quitting smoking. Nicotine patches, nicotine gum and nicotine lozenges are available over-the-counter, and a nicotine nasal spray and inhaler are currently available by prescription. Buproprion SR (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix) are non-nicotine pills.
  • Individual, group and telephone counseling are effective. Telephone quitline counseling is widely available and is effective for many different groups of smokers.