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Even one cigarette a day raises risk of earlier death

Original source: https://pennstatehershey.netreturns.biz/HealthInfo/Story.aspx?StoryId=198a6b74-ad2a-4168-89be-a896063b410f#.WRtEexPytBw

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You may have heard the phrase, “Everything in moderation.” It applies to a lot of things, but smoking isn’t one of them. In fact, a new study from the National Cancer Institute shows that smoking even one cigarette a day can lead to an earlier death.

The study looked at data from over 290,000 adults. It found that people who smoked an average of less than one cigarette per day over their lifetime had a 64 percent higher risk of an earlier death than people who never smoked. That risk rose to 87 percent for those who smoked between 1 and 10 cigarettes per day.

The good news? The risk falls as soon as a person quits smoking. And the sooner a person quit, the more the chance of an earlier death decreased.

A person’s cause of death was also affected by smoking activity. Those who smoked an average of less than one cigarette per day over their lifetime had nine times the risk of dying from lung cancer as people who never smoked. Those who smoked between 1 and 10 cigarettes per day had 12 times the risk of dying from lung cancer and six times the risk of dying from respiratory diseases as people who never smoked.

Don’t wait until it’s too late

No level of smoking is safe. Once you start smoking, quitting is the only way to reduce the risk of an earlier death. If you are a smoker who is trying to quit, or you are trying to help someone quit, talk to a healthcare professional. Doctors, dentists and pharmacists can explain the side effects of nicotine replacement and point you toward local resources and assistance for quitting.

If you are trying to help a smoker quit, expressing your concern for that person’s health and giving support through words and actions can go a long way. There are also many resources to start the process of quitting, such as smokefree.gov. You can also learn more in the Smoking health topic center.

 

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