May 31: World No Tobacco Day
The Member States of the World Health Organisation created World No Tobacco Day in 1987 to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes. This is a yearly celebration that informs the public on the dangers of using tobacco, the business practices of tobacco companies, steps were taken by WHO regarding the tobacco epidemic, and what people around the world can do to claim their right to health, healthy lifestyle, and to protect future generations.
The day is further intended to draw attention to the widespread prevalence of tobacco use and to negative health effects, which currently leads to more than 8 million deaths each year worldwide, including 1.2 million as the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke. Tobacco consumption is one of the factors that is believed to adversely impact the efforts to achieve the UN-adopted sustainable development agenda by 2030. The day has been met with both enthusiasm and resistance around the globe from governments, public health organizations, smokers, growers, and the tobacco industry.
Each year, WHO selects a theme for the day in order to create a more unified global message and also honors governments, organizations, and individuals for their efforts and contributions to curbing tobacco use. For the year 2022, the theme is “PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT “. As per WHO,” The harmful impact of the tobacco industry on the environment is vast and growing, adding unnecessary pressure to our planet’s scarce resources and fragile ecosystems.” and WHO has selected JHARKHAND for the WORLD NO TOBACCO DAY AWARD 2022.
India runs a National Tobacco Control Programme to educate people about the health implications of tobacco consumption. It also helps formulate policies and initiatives that could help the country achieve its goal. Tobacco consumption can lead to many health conditions like Lung cancer, Asthma, Heart disease, Chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder(COPD), and Stroke. Around 80-90 percent of people diagnosed with lung cancer have a history of tobacco smoking. Individuals consuming tobacco are more susceptible to developing severe COVID-19 infection which directly attacks already weakened lungs with reduced capacity.
Many actions have been taken and policies have been implemented to reduce the prevalence of tobacco consumption, but we still have a long way to go before achieving a tobacco-free world. I would urge each and every one of you to make people around you aware of the ill effects of tobacco consumption and help make the world tobacco-free.
“STOP THE TOBACCO INDUSTRY FROM POISONING OUR HEALTH AND OUR PLANET” -by UN
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Written By: Preksha Bafna, 3rd-year MBBS, NHL Municipal Medical College