Tobacco use is a critical issue. In the Healthy People 2020, it is one of the 12 topic areas that contain the leading health indicators; the indicators themselves include the percentage of the currently smoking adults and the “adolescents who smoked cigarettes in the past 30 days” (ODPHP, 2010, p. 4). Tobacco is being used all over the world; it can be chewed, sucked, snuffed, and smoked, but in any case, it remains harmful to humans.
Tobacco use is among the key risk factors for a variety of chronic illnesses including cancer and cardiovascular diseases; it contributes to the development of diabetes, arthritis, blindness, degeneration of the immune system, and various reproductive issues (Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion [ODPHP], 2016). Also, there exist disparities related to smoking that put various groups in disadvantage. In particular, LGB individuals are more likely to smoke than heterosexual people (CDC, 2016). Finally, second-hand smoke should not be forgotten about; often, it is children who are exposed to it.
What is most important about tobacco use is that it is a preventable issue. Just like other preventable health problems (for example, obesity), the problem of tobacco smoking is very costly and dangerous for the nation. The costs are multiple; they include the expenses of healthcare, sick leaves and other damages to business, but eventually, smoking costs lives (ODPHP, 2016). Smoking is a serious issue, and it needs to be addressed by initiatives like Healthy People 2020.
CDC. (2016). Tobacco-Related Disparities: LGBT. Web.
Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. (2016). Tobacco Use. Web.