Passive smoking kills 600000 a year

Passive smoking kills 600000 a year

Passive smoking kills 600000 a year - Passive Smoking Kills Over Half a Million People YearlyaSmoking not only kills the smoker but it also kills people hanging around the smoker. The first global study to assess the affect of second hand smoking found that every year more than 600,000 people throughout the world are killed by passive smoking.

According to the World Health Organization study, reported in the latest edition of the journal Lancet, children are most vulnerable to second hand smoking. Children are usually exposed to tobacco smoke in their own homes. Passive smoking kills more than 165,000 children every year.

The study team found that two in three people dying from second hand smoking live in Africa and South Asia. According to the WHO researchers, tobacco smoke and infectious disease are a “deadly combination” for children living in these underdeveloped parts of the world. Infants exposed to second hand smoking have a higher risk of dying from asthma and pneumonia. Passive smoking even increases the risk of sudden infant death syndrome.

The researchers collected data from 192 countries. It is estimated that 40 per cent children, 35 per cent non-smoking women and 33 person non-smoking men are exposed to second hand tobacco smoking each year, worldwide. Passive smoking is linked to 165,000 deaths from lower respiratory tract infections, 379,000 heart disease deaths, 21,400 lung cancer deaths and 36,900 asthma related deaths.

Children killed by passive smoking usually belonged to poor and middle-income countries. In high-income countries of Europe, second hand smoking kills about 71 children each year. However, income levels did not influence adult deaths from passive smoking.

Ensuring a smoke free environment could prevent exposure to tobacco smoke. Smoke free homes could significantly bring down the number of child deaths worldwide. To discourage smoking, the World Health Organization has urged all countries to implement the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The signatories to the convention have been asked to implement stringent anti-tobacco laws in their countries, which include banning tobacco advertisements and imposing higher taxes on tobacco products.

About 7.4 per cent of the global population lives in regions with strict smoke-free laws. Studies have shown that by imposing strict smoke-free laws, smoking in high-risk areas such as restaurants and bars could be reduced by about 90 per cent. Moreover, anti-smoking laws could help smokers quit smoking.

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