Know the Statistics

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Know the Statistics

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Know the Statistics
Know the Statistics
Here are some sobering smoking facts to keep in mind as you attempt to quit.
InteliHealth Medical Content

Reviewed by the Faculty of Harvard Medical School

Know the Statistics
Pat yourself on the back for taking the initiative to quit smoking. The health benefits you'll gain by quitting are innumerable. To keep you motivated, here are some sobering facts to keep in mind.
First, the good news:
  • About 70% of all smokers want to quit smoking.
Now the bad:
  • Cigarettes contain more than 40 cancer-causing chemicals.
  • More than 1 billion people worldwide smoke (about one-third of the world's population older than 15).
  • In 1996, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calculated that smoking kills more people every year than alcohol, cocaine, heroin, homicide, suicide, car accidents, fire and AIDS combined.
  • In the United States, smoking is responsible for approximately 440,000 deaths (one in every five deaths) each year, according to estimates from 1995 to 1999 statistics.
  • Of these deaths, approximately 3,000 occur in nonsmokers as a result of secondhand smoke.
  • In the U.S., lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women.
  • About 90% of all smokers begin smoking before the age of 21.
  • About 4.5 million teenagers in the U.S. smoke. (Past estimates have suggested that every day, about 3,000 begin smoking.)
  • In 2005, 14% of high school seniors reported smoking daily.
  • Smoking costs the U.S. economy more than $100 billion in health care costs and lost productivity.


Last updated September 08, 2011

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