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002 Don't smoke

              You greatly decrease your chance of having heart and lung diseases by not smoking. Your family is greatly benefited too, just as the community around you9. By not smoking, you can prevent the decline in your cognitive function as you grow old10 and slow down aging itself.


Smoking kills

              According to global experts, tobacco use will kill 6 million people in 2010. Most killer diseases like cancer, heart disease, and a range of other illnesses are somehow related, caused and/or aggravated by tobacco smoking. Tobacco use is the single most important risk factor for cancer and the major cause of the most common form of cancer, lung cancer. Globally, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths.


Quit now! Tomorrow might be too late

              If you do smoke, quitting now reduces your risk of heart disease almost immediately, and over the years also reduces your chance of getting lung diseases, including cancer.

              During pregnancy, smoking has many ill effects. However, moms-to-be who smoke but quit early in pregnancy can sharply reduce their risk of having a premature or small baby. These findings reinforce current clinical guidance to encourage smoking cessation among pregnant smokers and serve as an additional incentive to quit.11

              Workplace wellness programs involving smoking cessation and prevention are an effective way to reduce major risk factors for heart disease.


Smoking and pregnancy

              Smoking is a major risk factor to having a premature and small baby. It has also been linked to "cross eye" or strabismus (both esotropia and exotropia) in babies.12 More recently a Danish study quantified the risk of having a cross eyed baby to 90% for mothers who smoked 10 or more cigarettes per day.13


Love your family, don't smoke

              Smoking affects the whole family. Non-smoking wives of heavy smokers have an increased risk of developing lung cancer14 and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). While children whose mothers smoked during pregnancy have more than double the risk of having attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as other children.15 Worse, children in a family with members who smoke are more likely to become smokers.

              Smoking also burns away part of the family's income. The money to buy cigarettes, the medical cost of health problems associated with smoking, and the loss of productivity due to these health problems are major contributors in causing poverty to a family.


Smoking among Filipino youth

              The 2007 Global Tobacco Youth Survey (GYTS) conducted by the World Health Organization showed that one in every three Filipino teenagers aged 13 to 15 are already smokers, despite the existence of Republic Act 9211 or the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003 prohibiting smoking among people younger than 18 years old. This problem can be in part due to the attitude among high school students, showing that those who held the perception that most students were current smokers tend to be smokers themselves.16 In addition to that, a recent study also showed that among Filipino street children ages 8-17 years, 65% of males and 37% of females are current smokers.17


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