Most of the people who are now addicted to smoking are the ones who started off with ‘what harm could one cigarette do’. But a recent study has revealed that smoking even one cigarette for the first time can make more than two-thirds of people addicts. A survey involving 215,000 has revealed. 60 per cent of the youngsters revealed that they had tried a cigarette once in their lifetime, with nearly 69 per cent admitted to having progressed to becoming addicts.
"We've found that the conversion rate from 'first time smoker' to 'daily smoker' is surprisingly high, which helps confirm the importance of preventing cigarette experimentation in the first place," said Peter Hajek, Professor at the Queen Mary University in London.
The findings, published in the journal Nicotine & Tobacco Research, provides strong support for prioritising efforts to reduce cigarette experimentation among adolescents.
Given the high conversion rate found in surveys, the researchers suggest that at least some of the reduction in smoking prevalence observed over the past 20 years is likely due to reduced experimentation with cigarettes among adolescents.
While, concerns were expressed that e-cigarettes could be as addictive as conventional cigarettes, but this has not been the case, the study stated.
"It is striking that very few non-smokers who try e-cigarettes become daily vapers, while such a large proportion on non-smokers who try conventional cigarettes become daily smokers. The presence of nicotine is clearly not the whole story," Hajek said.
According to World Health Organisation, India is home to 12% of world’s total smokers. More than 1 million of people lose life due to tobacco consumption in India. 30% of total male population in India smokes while 3-5% of female smoke.
(With IANS Inputs)