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Tobacco

Our Approach

The cultivation, distribution, and use of tobacco have far reaching impacts on the health of individuals, communities, and the environment.  Reducing tobacco use could prevent a significant number of deaths, much disease, and environmental degradation.  Some specific consequences associated with the production and use of tobacco include:

  • Deforestation;
  • Cigarette butt litter;
  • Green tobacco sickness;
  • Depletion of soil nutrients;
  • Exposure to and pollution from pesticides and fertilizers

Community Health provides information about these and other consequences associated with the commercial production, distribution, and use of tobacco. In addition, Community Health provides information and resources to help CU students quit using tobacco including free one-on-one tobacco cessation counseling.

Public Health Perspective

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States.  Every year, tobacco use kills approximately 400,000 people.  More deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than the combined deaths caused by suicides, murders, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), illegal drug use, and motor vehicle injuries. In addition, exposure to secondhand smoke causes nearly 50,000 deaths among adults in the United States. Effective tobacco control policies help reduce the impacts of tobacco use and exposure, especially for vulnerable, targeted populations.   Cost-effective measures that reduce tobacco use include:

  • Raising tobacco tax rates;
  • Improving access to tobacco cessation services;
  • Increasing the size of warning labels on tobacco products;
  • Promoting clean indoor and outdoor air workplaces and public places;
  • Prohibiting the promotion and advertisement of all tobacco products, logos and brand names.

What the Scientific Evidence Tells Us

Based on the National College Health Assessment 75% of CU students choose to not smoke cigarettes. As one of the most addictive substances, it can be quite difficult to quit using tobacco products.  Research indicates that it may take seven to nine quit attempts before someone is able to quit successfully. To increase the chances of success, studies show that it's important for people to combine the following approaches:

  • Cessation counseling,
  • Prescription medication, and
  • Nicotine replacement therapy.

Implications for the CU campus

Putting the public health perspective into practice; environmental, personal, and policy implications

Links

American Lung Association

Tobacco Free Kids

World Bank 

The Framework Convention Alliance