History of World No Tobacco Day
The World Health Organisation (WHO) selected April 7, 1988, the organization’s 40th anniversary, as World No-Tobacco Day in 1987 (1). World No-Tobacco Day’s goal was to inspire everyone who smokes or chews tobacco to give it up for at least 24 hours. Numerous legislative and health education initiatives with the specific topic of “Tobacco or Health: Choose Health” were sparked and identified as a result of the event’s extensive press coverage. Bans on smoking in public places (Ethiopia), the suspension of government tobacco sales (Cuba), government health messages on the radio and in print (Lebanon), poster competitions (Spain), public cigarette-burning ceremonies (Nepal), and extensive public awareness campaigns (China) are just a few examples of the actions that served as examples in various nations.
The theme “Women and Tobacco–The Female Smoker: At Added Risk” was emphasised on May 31, 1989, the second World No-Tobacco Day (2). The WHO director-general requested that all major UN organisations work together to support this event by proclaiming their offices tobacco-free on World No-Tobacco Day. The WHO distributed press packages, videotapes, and radio programmes. More than 300 newspaper stories from around the world were sent to the WHO’s Tobacco or Health (TOH) Programme after the event to document activities and press coverage linked to World No-Tobacco Day.
Importance of World No Tobacco Day
An estimated 35 lakh hectares of land are used for tobacco farming each year throughout the world. It is believed that tobacco production results in 2 lakh hectares of annual deforestation. Because tobacco farmlands are more prone to desertification (loss of biological productivity) than other agricultural operations like maize cultivation and cattle grazing, tobacco farming has a noticeably higher damaging impact on ecosystems. Additionally, the intensive use of artificial fertilisers and pesticides required for tobacco cultivation could deplete soil fertility and reduce the yield of other food crops.
If tobacco were produced as a commercial crop, it may endanger the sustainability of food production in low- and middle-income countries. 90% of the world’s largest tobacco-growing regions are low- and middle-income nations, and four of them fall into the category of low-income countries with food insecurity.
Given the aforementioned possibilities, swift legislative action is required to restrict the production of tobacco while assisting farmers in switching to the production of alternative food crops. The aforementioned tenets are successfully upheld by World No Tobacco Day through the use of campaigns with recurring themes.
How Smoking and Tobacco Consumption Impacts Health?
Smoking and tobacco use have a variety of negative health effects and may contribute to the following deadly diseases:
Achalasia Cardia (pancreas, stomach, mouth, liver, rectum, colon, and oesophagus) and other neuro-related diseases such stroke, small vessel ischemic disease of the brain (SVID), and vascular dementia are examples of cancers of the digestive system.
heart and lung conditions
chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) with diabetes
tuberculosis specific eye conditions
How Tobacco is Affecting the Environment?
- Around 4.5 lakh crore cigarettes are not disposed of properly every year, generating 80 crore kg of toxic waste and releasing thousands of chemicals into the air, water, and soil.
- Tobacco cultivation uses a lot of water, depleting the planet’s water supply, resulting in the destruction of 35 lakh hectares of land annually.
- Tobacco cultivation also accounts for the deforestation of 20,000 hectares and soil degradation every year.
Specially Related to Oral Health, Smoking can Cause:
- Bad breath
- Stained teeth and tongue
- Dulls sense of smell and taste
- Increased buildup of plaque and tartar on the teeth
- Increased loss of bone within the jaw
- Gum disease and tooth loss
- Increased risk of leukoplakia, which is white patches inside the mouth
- Slow healing after periodontal treatment, tooth extraction, or other surgery
- Oral cancer
- Lower success rate of dental implants
Gujarat accounts for 48% of the country’s total tobacco production of 8 lakh tonnes.
Denmark is known for some unique pipe tobacco blends, and it exported $329 million of tobacco products in 2021.
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Oral health refers to the overall health of the mouth, teeth, gums, and tongue. It is an essential component of overall health and well-being. Good oral health helps prevent tooth decay, gum disease, bad breath, and other dental problems that can affect a person’s quality of life.