Barnsley: Increasing numbers of smokers quit following intensive work by health officials
New figures released by the Office of National Statistics show that Barnsley achieved a 2.4 per cent reduction in adult smoking rates in 2016-17. The smoking rate fell from 20.6 per cent in 2016 to 18.2 per cent in 2017, exceeding a target to reduce levels to 20 per cent.
Barnsley Council is working to help existing smokers quit and to ensure that children and young people are not tempted by tobacco use, by making parks and school grounds voluntary smokefree zones and discouraging parents from smoking when they drop off or collect children from school.
Kaye Mann, Barnsley Council’s senior health improvement officer, said: “Evidence tells us that is the best way to stop them from smoking, to denormalise it. When they don’t see it as normal to do so, they don’t start. As well as getting the current generation to quit, it is about stopping people taking it up. The aim so to create a smoke free generation by 2025.”
Source: The Star, 5 July 2018
Peers and parents may have influenced drop in childhood smoking
A recent study has found that socioeconomic status and parental/peer behaviour are strongly linked to the risk of childhood smoking.
Researchers at Pennsylvania State University in University Park analysed data from two groups of UK children, one born in 1970 and the other born 2000-2002. They found that 14.5 per cent of the 1970 cohort had smoked at last one cigarette by age 10-11, while that was true for only 2.4 percent of the 2000-2002 cohort.
Two of the biggest factors influencing smoking rates for the 2000-2002 cohort were educational backgrounds and smoking prevalence among the children’s mothers. The authors of the study state that: “childhood smoking in today’s young people in the UK is now more strongly linked to early life disadvantages compared to a generation ago.”
Source: Reuters, 11 July 2018
USA: Research suggests E-cigarette flavourings may have adverse health effect
A study at Boston University has found that electronic cigarette liquids sweetened with flavourings like clove and vanilla may damage cells in the blood vessels and heart even when they don’t contain nicotine.
Researchers applied common e-cigarette flavourings to samples of endothelial cells, which line arteries and veins as well as the inside of the heart. Five common flavours, including mint and cinnamon, impaired production of nitric oxide which could contribute to an increased risk of heart disease or strokes.
Source: Reuters, 11 July 2018
Editorial Note: The study concludes that short-term exposure to flavours may have relevance to cardiovascular issues. The researchers note that more serious issues such as cell death were induced only at high concentrations unlikely to be achieved under normal conditions of use.
Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology: Flavorings in Tobacco Products Induce Endothelial Cell Dysfunction
Ireland: Young filmmakers lift prize for anti-smoking film
A group of young people representing Nenagh Training Centre in Tipperary have come second in the Short Film Competition Senior Category at this year’s Irish Cancer Society X-HALE Youth Awards 2018.
The group’s short film entitled ‘Get off the Nicotine Road’, was among a number of other anti-tobacco films produced as part of the event which aimed to raise awareness about the harm caused by tobacco. According to recent statistics produced by Healthy Ireland, 16 per cent of Irish children aged nine or older have smoked cigarettes in their lifetime and 6 per cent are classified as current smokers.
Donal Buggy, head of services at the Irish Cancer Society, said that young people “have a vital role to play on the journey to Ireland becoming a tobacco-free country”.
Source: Tipperary Star, 12 July 2018