Quit Smoking and Add Years to Your Life

Approximately 23% of Australians are smokers which equates to around 3.5 million people. These people are seriously risking their health and possibly shaving years off their life:

According to studies on smokers, if you smoke1 pack of cigarettes a day for 10 years you lose 2 years of your life. If you smoke2 packs in 10 years time you lose 4 years. If you have smoked one pack of cigarettes a day for 20 years you lose 4 years off of your life and if you smoke2 packs a day in 20 years you lose 9 years off of your life.

Smoking damages most organs in the human body and is linked to at least 10 different cancers. Smoking accounts for nearly 30 percent of all cancer deaths.

A few smoking facts:

  • Tobacco smoking is the largest single preventable cause of death and disease in Australia (Cancer Council 2006).
  • Smoking is a key risk factor for the three diseases that cause most deaths in Australia: ischaemic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and lung cancer. Smokers are also at increased risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and reduced lung function.
  • Smoking in pregnancy increases the risk of health problems for both mother and child.
  • Smoking is responsible for around 80% of all lung cancer deaths and 20% of all cancer deaths (smoking has been linked to cancers of the mouth, bladder, kidney, stomach and cervix, among others).
  • The 2003 Australian Burden of Disease Study indicates that tobacco smoking was second behind overweight among the leading causes of burden of disease in Australia. It was estimated that tobacco smoking was responsible for about 8% of the total burden of disease and injury for allAustralians (9.5% of total for males and 6.1% of total for females).

How to Quit Smoking

The first thing to do if you want to quit smoking and don’t know how is to speak to your doctor who can recommend a plan of action and then monitor your progress. Other useful information can be found at the Quit campaign website.