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Tobacco Use & Exposure

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, tobacco use is the largest preventable cause of death and disease in the United States. Each year, approximately 480,000 Americans die from tobacco-related illnesses. More than 16 million American suffer from at least one disease caused by smoking.

Smoking related illness in the United States costs more than $300 billion each year, including about $170 billion for direct medical care for adults and more than $156 billion in lost productivity.


In 2015, 22% of Lorain County adults were current smokers and 23% were considered former smokers.
  • 19% of male adults were current smokers and 27% had tried to quit smoking one or more times.
  • 25% of female adults in the county were current smokers and 58% had tried to quit smoking one or more times (Source: 2015 Lorain County Health Assessment).


Benefits and Milestones of Quitting

According to the American Heart Association and the U.S. Surgeon General, this is how your body starts to recover from smoking:
  • In your first 20 minutes after quitting: your blood pressure and heart rate recover from the cigarette-induced spike.
  • After 12 hours of smoke-free living: the carbon monoxide levels in your blood return to normal.
  • After two weeks to three months of smoke-free living: your circulation and lung function begin to improve.
  • After one to nine months of smoke-free living: clear and deeper breathing gradually return as coughing and shortness of breath diminishes; you regain the ability to cough productively instead of hacking, which cleans your lungs and reduce your risk of infection.
  • One year after quitting smoking: a person's risk of coronary heart disease is reduced by 50%.
  • Five to 15 years after quitting smoking: a person's risk of stroke is simliar to that of a nonsmoker.
  • After 10 years of smoke-free living: your lung cancer death rate is about half that of a person who has continued to smoke. The risk of other cancers, such as throat, mouth, esophagus, bladder, cervix, and pancreas decreases too.