The use of tobacco is said to be the single greatest cause of a number of deaths globally. A recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO) showed that consumption of Tobacco in any form claims more than 161,000 lives every year, which amounts to around 19% of total deaths in Bangladesh. Reportedly, 41.3 million people use tobacco in the country, out of which 47.3% are smokers. Also, cardiovascular diseases are the leading tobacco-related causes of premature deaths in the country, as per the UN agency for global health.
The Tobacco Atlas data shows that more than 1, 72,000 children in the age group of 10-14 years and 2,48,80,000 adults (15+ years old) continue to use tobacco on daily basis. Also, 39.8% of adult men, 0.7% adult women, along with 1.86% boys and 0.2% girls use tobacco in Bangladesh. Apart from this, 31.5% population in the country consumes tobacco in other forms than cigarettes. Overall, the use of tobacco claimed lives of 25.54% men and 9.68% women (1, 61,200 people annually).
Certainly, there has been a massive increase in the number of tobacco users in Bangladesh. With alarming statistics, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Heart Federation (WHF) focused on ‘tobacco-related heart diseases’ as their theme for this year.
In the wake of this major concerning issue, various healthcare organizations in Kolkata observed ‘No Tobacco Day’ on May 31, 2018. Apart from creating awareness about the risks associated with tobacco consumption, health check-ups including pulmonary function tests were conducted by these organizations.
AMRI Hospital, one of the best multi-specialty hospitals in Kolkata conducted spot pulmonary function test and organized an awareness seminar along with healthcare professionals and medical students. The test was conducted among morning-walkers at the Safari through a portable PFT device.
The study of American Lung Association showed more than 7,000 chemicals generated on burning the ingredients of a cigarette. The hazardous toxins present in cigarettes make your blood thicker as they enter it.
According to Dr Shelly Shamim, associate professor and consultant pulmonologist, AMRI Hospital, Dhakuria, every component in cigarettes – nicotine, tar, carbon monoxide, and carbon – has a major adverse impact on the human body.
“Smoking in any form causes damage to the body. E-cigarettes that are touted less harmful than cigarettes are in fact more harmful because they have concentrated doses of nicotine. Slow ingestion of concentrated nicotine is even more harmful,” he said.
Medical experts at AMRI Hospital Kolkata emphasize that there is a direct relationship between the use of tobacco and decrease in the density of your bones. It makes you vulnerable to various chronic diseases like asthma, diabetes, osteoporosis, cardiovascular diseases and cancer of lung, kidney, throat, mouth, stomach and pancreas. Tobacco consumption can also lead to severe reproductive problems, cataract, and age related problems, including dental diseases and wrinkles.
“The only way to prevent cardiovascular diseases is to lead a healthy lifestyle, which includes quitting tobacco in any form, and consumption of alcohol,” said Dr Sumanta Chatterjee consultant cardiologist at AMRI Hospital, Dhakuria.