World Tobacco Day 2021 Theme: Commit to Quit Smoking

 - Sakshi Post
By Dr Muralidhar Reddy
The world health organisation designates 31st May of each year as World no tobacco day. Tobacco causes 8 million deaths every year.

Tobacco is marketed in different types for smoking like cigarettes, beedis, cigars, hookah etc and for chewing tobacco like gutka etc. Nicotine is the substance contained in the leaves of tobacco plant which leads to the addiction of this smoking.

Effects of smoking on Health:

Tobacco smoking is the leading preventable cause of early disease and death. Even passive smoking is also harmful to health. It is one of the risk factor for COVID- 19 infection in this pandemic. Smokers are more likely to develop severe disease in covid 19.

Cardiovascular: smoking increases the risk of atherosclerosis of blood vessels reducing blood flow   leading to coronary artery disease, MI (heart attacks), stroke and HTN.

Respiratory system: most commonly affected system leading to diseases like COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), chronic bronchitis and increases the risk of various viral and bacterial infections.

Smoking is one of the risk factor for infertility in both males and females. In males it leads to low sperm count and impotency. In pregnant females it leads abortions, premature births and infant illnesses.

Smoking is leading cause of many cancers mainly lung cancer, laryngeal cancers, oral cancers, cervix cancer etc.

It leads to many diseases of oral cavity, skin, immune system, bones etc.


People willing to quit smoking should consult their physicians to assist them and involve them in de- addiction programs. Non pharmacological approaches like health education and group counseling etc to promote quitting. Pharmacological approaches like use of nicotine replacement therapies in the form of gums etc and various drugs which should be used under the guidance of a physician to achieve and sustain quitting of smoking.


The benefits of quitting tobacco are almost immediate. After just 20 minutes of quitting smoking, your heart rate drops. Within 12 hours, the carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal. Within 2-12 weeks, your circulation improves and lung function increases. Within 1-9 months, coughing and shortness of breath decrease. Within 5-15 years, your stroke risk is reduced to that of a non-smoker. Within 10 years, your lung cancer death rate is about half that of a smoker. Within 15 years, your risk of heart disease is that of a non-smoker.

Reduces the risk of various diseases and imminent early deaths significantly. The individual’s risk of getting various diseases gradually decreases by sustained quitting of smoking.


“commit to quit”

covid 19 pandemic has led to millions of tobacco users saying they want to quit we need to commit them to quit.

We as a society can’t afford another generation getting addicted to tobacco and killed by its diseases and we need to empower youth to stand up against tobacco by dispelling its lies and refusing to use its products.

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