About 12 percent of Iranian adults are daily smokers: report

June 2, 2019

TEHRAN -- About 12 percent of Iranian adults above 15 years old are daily smokers, Tobacco Prevention and Control Research Center announced, IRNA reported on Saturday.

Including hookah smokers, the percentage of smokers reach about 20 percent, the report added.

About 20 percent of men and two to three percent of women are daily smokers, the head of the center Gholamreza Heidari announced.

Some 30 percent of women and 35 percent of men smoke hookah, which cause lung diseases and other health problems, he added.

‘Tobacco smoking cause 75 percent of lung disease. Tobacco smoke contains over 4,000 toxic chemicals, which affect all organs of the body,” he explained.

Not only smokers but those who live with them are subjected to lung diseases. Even the tobacco smoke contamination that remains after the cigarette is extinguished is dangerous especially for kids, he lamented.

The statistics provided by the center is submitted to health ministry in order to be used in the national tobacco control plan, he said.

Online or on call services should be provided for smoking cessation in person or for groups, he said.

Hard-hitting anti-tobacco advertisements and graphic pack warnings can be effective in increasing the number of smokers who quit, however, the pictures on figurate packs are not still warning in Iran, he lamented.

The increase in tobacco price is a cost-effective way which leads to 10% decrease in tobacco consumption, he said.

------- Smoking kills more than 8 million people a year

World Health Organization warns that more than 40 percent of smokers globally die from lung diseases, such as cancer, chronic respiratory diseases and tuberculosis.

The tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced, killing more than 8 million people a year. More than 7 million of those deaths are the result of direct tobacco use while around 1.2 million are the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.

The U.N. agency reports 3.3 million users will die from lung-related diseases. This number includes people exposed to second-hand smoke, among them more than 60,000 children under age five who die of lower respiratory infections due to passive smoking.

SB/MQ/MG

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