A recent report released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that the number of smokers in the U.S. has finally reached a record low.
This should come as no surprise due to the emphasis in recent decades on the health risks associated with smoking, as well as the reduced number of advertisements for tobacco products viewed by audiences today. An influx of anti-smoking campaigns, the implementation of various laws, and an increased accessibility to quitting methods have also helped to greatly reduce the percentage of smokers in the U.S. alone.
In 2005, 20.9 percent of the adult population was identified as smokers, and this number dropped to 16.8 percent in 2014, an all-time record low. The CDC has pointed out that adults aged 18 to 24 experienced the lowest cigarette usage; however, this is likely due to a higher interest in alternative smoking methods like hookahs and e-cigarettes. Meanwhile, adults aged 25 to 44 were discovered as being the age group most likely to smoke. The report also revealed that were more male cigarette smokers than female smokers; 18.8 percent and 14.8 percent, comparatively.
Unfortunately, CDC figures reveal that those under the U.S. government’s Medicaid program were more likely to smoke (29.1 percent), same as U.S. citizens without any form of healthcare (27.9 percent). However, they also found lower numbers of smokers among those who had private health insurance (12.9 percent) and Medicare (12.5 percent).
CDC Director Tom Frieden is pleased with the study’s recent findings: “Smoking kills half a million Americans each year and costs more than $300 billion,” he said in a statement released on November 12. “This report shows real progress helping American smokers quit and that more progress is possible.”