The Percentage of U.S. Adults Who Smoke Continues to Decline

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Quit Smoking Success

It appears the massive public education campaigns designed to relay the health risks associated with smoking are having a positive effect. The percentage of U.S. adults who smoke cigarettes continues to decline, according to an article in CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).

The study, which uses data from the 2003 National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), finds that approximately 21.6 percent of U.S. adults, over 45 million people, are current smokers. That's down from 22.5 percent in 2002 and 22.8 percent in 2001. The study also found that the 46 million adults who have quit smoking outnumber the 45 million people who continue to smoke: the second straight year this has happened.

"The continuing decline in cigarette smoking by Americans is good news and we congratulate those who've successfully stopped smoking," CDC Director Dr. Julie Gerberding said. "We encourage more people to take this very important step to improve their overall health and reduce their risk of disease." For copies of the full MMWR articles, visit www.cdc.gov/mmwr

The Surgeon General's Tips to Prevent Tobacco Exposure in Children:

  • Stop smoking.

  • Don't allow smoking in your home.

  • Don't smoke while holding a child or when near a child.

  • Do not allow smoking in your motor vehicle.

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  • Be certain that your child's schools and child care facilities are smoke
    free.

  • Insist on being in the non-smoking section in restaurants and other public
    places.

  • Talk with your child about the dangers of tobacco.

  • Do not allow caregivers to smoke around your child.

  • Take an active interest in your child's social life.

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US Health and Human Services

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