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Tobacco smoking: Health impact, prevalence, correlates and interventions

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Psychology & Health

Routledge

smoking, tobacco, addiction

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      Abstract

      Background and objectives : Despite reductions in prevalence in recent years, tobacco smoking remains one of the main preventable causes of ill-health and premature death worldwide. This paper reviews the extent and nature of harms caused by smoking, the benefits of stopping, patterns of smoking, psychological, pharmacological and social factors that contribute to uptake and maintenance of smoking, the effectiveness of population and individual level interventions aimed at combatting tobacco smoking, and the effectiveness of methods used to reduce the harm caused by continued use of tobacco or nicotine in some form.

      Results and conclusions : Smoking behaviour is maintained primarily by the positive and negative reinforcing properties of nicotine delivered rapidly in a way that is affordable and palatable, with the negative health consequences mostly being sufficiently uncertain and distant in time not to create sufficient immediate concern to deter the behaviour. Raising immediate concerns about smoking by tax increases, social marketing and brief advice from health professionals can increase the rate at which smokers try to stop. Providing behavioural and pharmacological support can improve the rate at which those quit attempts succeed. Implementing national programmes containing these components are effective in reducing tobacco smoking prevalence and reducing smoking-related death and disease.

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      Most cited references 70

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      Mortality in relation to smoking: 50 years' observations on male British doctors.

      To compare the hazards of cigarette smoking in men who formed their habits at different periods, and the extent of the reduction in risk when cigarette smoking is stopped at different ages. Prospective study that has continued from 1951 to 2001. United Kingdom. 34 439 male British doctors. Information about their smoking habits was obtained in 1951, and periodically thereafter; cause specific mortality was monitored for 50 years. Overall mortality by smoking habit, considering separately men born in different periods. The excess mortality associated with smoking chiefly involved vascular, neoplastic, and respiratory diseases that can be caused by smoking. Men born in 1900-1930 who smoked only cigarettes and continued smoking died on average about 10 years younger than lifelong non-smokers. Cessation at age 60, 50, 40, or 30 years gained, respectively, about 3, 6, 9, or 10 years of life expectancy. The excess mortality associated with cigarette smoking was less for men born in the 19th century and was greatest for men born in the 1920s. The cigarette smoker versus non-smoker probabilities of dying in middle age (35-69) were 42% nu 24% (a twofold death rate ratio) for those born in 1900-1909, but were 43% nu 15% (a threefold death rate ratio) for those born in the 1920s. At older ages, the cigarette smoker versus non-smoker probabilities of surviving from age 70 to 90 were 10% nu 12% at the death rates of the 1950s (that is, among men born around the 1870s) but were 7% nu 33% (again a threefold death rate ratio) at the death rates of the 1990s (that is, among men born around the 1910s). A substantial progressive decrease in the mortality rates among non-smokers over the past half century (due to prevention and improved treatment of disease) has been wholly outweighed, among cigarette smokers, by a progressive increase in the smoker nu non-smoker death rate ratio due to earlier and more intensive use of cigarettes. Among the men born around 1920, prolonged cigarette smoking from early adult life tripled age specific mortality rates, but cessation at age 50 halved the hazard, and cessation at age 30 avoided almost all of it.
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        Shape of the relapse curve and long-term abstinence among untreated smokers.

        To describe the relapse curve and rate of long-term prolonged abstinence among smokers who try to quit without treatment. Systematic literature review. Cochrane Reviews, Dissertation Abstracts, Excerpt Medica, Medline, Psych Abstracts and US Center for Disease Control databases plus bibliographies of articles and requests of scientists. Prospective studies of self-quitters or studies that included a no-treatment control group. Two reviewers independently extracted data in a non-blind manner. The number of studies was too small and the data too heterogeneous for meta-analysis or other statistical techniques. There is a paucity of studies reporting relapse curves of self-quitters. The existing eight relapse curves from two studies of self-quitters and five no-treatment control groups indicate most relapse occurs in the first 8 days. These relapse curves were heterogeneous even when the final outcome was made similar. In terms of prolonged abstinence rates, a prior summary of 10 self-quitting studies, two other studies of self-quitters and three no-treatment control groups indicate 3-5% of self-quitters achieve prolonged abstinence for 6-12 month after a given quit attempt. More reports of relapse curves of self-quitters are needed. Smoking cessation interventions should focus on the first week of abstinence. Interventions that produce abstinence rates of 5-10% may be effective. Cessation studies should report relapse curves.
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          Current Cigarette Smoking Among Adults - United States, 2005-2015.

          Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States, and cigarettes are the most commonly used tobacco product among U.S. adults (1,2). To assess progress toward achieving the Healthy People 2020 target of reducing the proportion of U.S. adults who smoke cigarettes to ≤12.0% (objective TU1.1),* CDC assessed the most recent national estimates of cigarette smoking prevalence among adults aged ≥18 years using data from the 2015 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS). The proportion of U.S. adults who smoke cigarettes declined from 20.9% in 2005 to 15.1% in 2015, and the proportion of daily smokers declined from 16.9% to 11.4%. However, disparities in cigarette smoking persist. In 2015, prevalence of cigarette smoking was higher among adults who were male; were aged 25-44 years; were American Indian/Alaska Native; had a General Education Development certificate (GED); lived below the federal poverty level; lived in the Midwest; were insured through Medicaid or were uninsured; had a disability/limitation; were lesbian, gay, or bisexual; or who had serious psychological distress. Proven population-based interventions, including tobacco price increases, comprehensive smoke-free laws, anti-tobacco mass media campaigns, and barrier-free access to tobacco cessation counseling and medications, are critical to reducing cigarette smoking and smoking-related disease and death among U.S. adults, particularly among subpopulations with the highest smoking prevalences (3).
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [ a ]Department of Behavioural Science and Health, University College London , London, UK
            Author notes
            Journal
            Psychol Health
            Psychol Health
            GPSH
            gpsh20
            Psychology & Health
            Routledge
            0887-0446
            1476-8321
            3 August 2017
            28 May 2017
            : 32
            : 8 , Health behaviours
            : 1018-1036
            28553727
            5490618
            1325890
            10.1080/08870446.2017.1325890
            © 2017 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group

            This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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            Figures: 1, Tables: 3, Equations: 0, References: 87, Pages: 19
            Product
            Funding
            Funded by: Cancer Research UK 10.13039/501100000289
            Award ID: C1417/A22962
            Categories
            Article
            Articles

            Clinical Psychology & Psychiatry

            addiction, tobacco, smoking

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