Nation won't meet smoking goals

December 19, 1999

With fewer adults quitting and more youths becoming smokers, the nation won't meet its smoking-related goals for 2000, according to researchers.

"The combined failures of individual, community, and legislative policy efforts made it impossible to meet the 15 percent smoking prevalence mark set for the year 2000," said lead study author C. Tracy Orleans, PhD, of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in Princeton, New Jersey.

Approximately 25 percent of U.S. adults currently smoke. Several decades ago approximately 65 percent of Americans smoked, a rate that began to drop steadily following the Surgeon General's 1964 report. The smoking decline slowed in 1990, and youth rates concurrently rose, with over 3,000 youths becoming new smokers daily.

"Research has produced effective strategies for helping smokers quit, including cognitive behavioral and nicotine replacement therapies," said Orleans.

"However, more work needs to be done to reach smokers in low-income and minority populations and to develop effective treatments for adolescents, pregnant women, and highly addicted smokers and for smokeless tobacco users."

Room for improvement also exists with regard to school, worksite, healthcare, and community-based efforts, according to Orleans and co-author K. Michael Cummings, PhD, of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute. Their research appears in the November/December issue of the American Journal of Health Promotion.

School-based prevention programs have succeeded only in delaying tobacco use. Worksite efforts have not succeeded on a large scale and have not impacted blue-collar smokers. Community-based programs have also had disappointing results, and although physician advice has been demonstrated to motivate smoking cessation efforts, many smokers don't receive such advice from their physicians, according to the researchers.

On a more positive note, 50 percent of workplaces now have formal anti-smoking policies; more health plans provide some coverage for state-of-the-art smoking cessation treatments; and the growth of managed care, with its emphasis on illness prevention, is likely to result in the spread of more "quit smoking" messages.

Anti-smoking efforts are most effective in combination with tobacco control legislation and environmental change. For example, school-based preventive programs combined with higher excise taxes, youth access law enforcement, counteradvertising, and antitobacco advocacy have the most potential for success, according to Orleans and Cummings.

Modern research tools must be enlisted to increase what is known about the causes of youth smoking as well as the physiology of addiction, so that more effective treatments can be developed for the 50 million Americans addicted to tobacco.

"The nation has reached a point of unprecedented potential to reduce the social, health, and economic harm caused by tobacco," concluded Orleans.
The American Journal of Health Promotion is a bimonthly peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the field of health promotion. For information about the journal call (248) 682-0707 or visit the journal's website at .

Posted by the Center for the Advancement of Health < >. For information about the Center, call Petrina Chong, < > (202) 387-2829.

Center for Advancing Health

Related Smoking Articles from Brightsurf:

Smoking rates falling in adults, but stroke survivors' smoking rates remain steady
While the rate of Americans who smoke tobacco has fallen steadily over the last two decades, the rate of stroke survivors who smoke has not changed significantly.

What is your risk from smoking? Your network knows!
A new study from researchers at Penn's Annenberg School for Communication found that most people, smokers and non-smokers alike, were nowhere near accurate in their answers to questions about smoking's health effects.

Want to quit smoking? Partner up
Kicking the habit works best in pairs. That's the main message of a study presented today at EuroPrevent 2019, a scientific congress of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

Smoking and mortality in Asia
In this analysis of data from 20 studies conducted in China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and India with more than 1 million participants, deaths associated with smoking continued to increase among men in Asia grouped by the years in which they were born.

Predictors of successfully quitting smoking among smokers registered at the quit smoking clinic at a public hospital in northeastern Malaysia
In the current issue of Family Medicine and Community Health, Nur Izzati Mohammad et al. consider how cigarette smoking is one of the risk factors leading to noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular and respiratory system diseases and cancer.

Restaurant and bar smoking bans do reduce smoking, especially among the highly educated
Smoking risk drops significantly in college graduates when they live near areas that have completely banned smoking in bars and restaurants, according to a new study in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

How the UK smoking ban increased wellbeing
Married women with children reported the largest increase in well-being following the smoking bans in the UK in 2006 and 2007 but there was no comparable increase for married men with children.

Smoking study personalizes treatment
A simple blood test is allowing Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) researchers to determine which patients should be prescribed varenicline (Chantix) to stop smoking and which patients could do just as well, and avoid side effects, by using a nicotine patch.

A biophysical smoking gun
While much about Alzheimer's disease remains a mystery, scientists do know that part of the disease's progression involves a normal protein called tau, aggregating to form ropelike inclusions within brain cells that eventually strangle the neurons.

A case where smoking helped
A mutation in the hemoglobin of a young woman in Germany was found to cause her mild anemia.

Read More: Smoking News and Smoking Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to