In today’s day and age, things which were once considered to be taboo are now being embraced by the general population. Social habits such as smoking and vaping along with drug abuse are big issues that need to be addressed, especially amongst the adolescent and younger demographics.
This is crucial as this may reduce or prevent nicotine dependence and avoid the severe health consequences of chronic smoking.
After several different epidemiological studies were conducted, it was noted that cigarette smoking begins by 18 years of age for 88% of adults who become daily smokers, and 99% of them have their first use by the age of 26 years of age.
Nearly one in four high school seniors is a current cigarette smoker when compared to one in three young adults and one in five adults. There are still significant disparities of tobacco use amongst youth across the nation.
The prevalence of cigarette smoking is highest among American Indians and Alaska Natives, followed by Whites and Hispanics, and then Asians and Blacks. The prevalence of cigarette smoking is also highest among lower socioeconomic status youth.
The latest data show the use of smokeless tobacco is increasing among White high school males, and cigar smoking may be increasing among Black high school females.
Currently, there are over 20 million people in the United States who are both active and former addicts. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), from 2000 to 2015, more than half a million individuals died from drug overdoses.
91 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose. In 2017, the number of opiate overdose deaths has jumped to 144 per day.
Addiction plays a multi-faceted role in how it affects society. Not only is it detrimental for the abuser’s overall health and risk of developing disease, it affects incarceration rates, vehicle accidents, employment and the overall financial burden placed on the government and health insurers.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse has estimated that the annual financial burden to be in excess of $78.5 billion, including the costs of healthcare, lost productivity, addiction treatment, and criminal justice involvement.
According to SAMHSA, approximately 8.9 million Americans have co-occurring mental health illness and a substance abuse issue, known as dual diagnosis. They estimated that over 55% of people with co-occurring disorders do not receive any treatment for their conditions.
With that being said, there is no simple fix solution to the issue at hand. Rather, addiction is a multi-faceted problem which needs to be addressed from several different angles.
It is imperative that the medical and behavioral components of addiction go hand-in-hand and are addressed collectively to achieve positive outcomes.
Along with that, patients have to be held accountable for their recovery and will be provided with all the tools necessary to achieve their goal of long-term sobriety and reintegration into society, as a responsible citizen.
Long-term tobacco smoking can have adverse effects in nearly every organ of the body and cause a variety of diseases. In the United States, the adverse health effects from cigarette smoking account for more than 480,000 deaths among adults, or nearly one of every five deaths; more deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than by all deaths from HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, and firearm-related incidents combined.
Cancer was among the first diseases causally linked to smoking. Smoking causes cancers of the bladder, oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, cervix, kidney, lung, pancreas, and stomach and also causes acute myeloid leukemia. Smoking causes approximately 90 percent of lung cancer deaths in men and women.
A very small minority of substance abusers who smoke are able to quit without any formal intervention. The increasing use of “vaping” products by youth has been associated with an increased risk of subsequent use of traditional cigarettes, marijuana, opioids, and other illicit drugs]. Those using products with higher nicotine concentrations are more likely to have higher rates of vaping and smoking.
It is recommended that healthcare providers initiate behavioral support for smoking cessation. Efforts at smoking cessation counseling can be successful in the medical care setting. According to a meta-analysis of counseling interventions in pediatric primary care settings, counseling doubled long-term abstinence rates compared with no treatment, although overall abstinence rates with or without treatment were low.
A variety of techniques were used successfully, ranging from one session of individual counseling with follow-up phone calls, to six or eight sessions in a group format, or brief clinician counseling followed by a computer-based tobacco intervention.
At Detox of South Florida, a premier Florida drug and alcohol treatment center, several therapeutic and diagnostic modalities are utilized at our facility, in order to provide comprehensive care to our patients. These modalities have been tried and tested, and use the latest, cutting-edge technology to provide in-depth insight into different areas of interest pertaining to drug and substance abuse and tend to veer away from traditional pharmacological approaches employed in current practice.
Smoking cessation programs are integrated into the core fundamentals of the program and serve to assist the struggling addict find resolve in their plight with substance abuse. A high level of attention is given to educating patients on the risks associated with substance abuse and smoking.
Detox of South Florida is very fortunate to have a dedicated team of healthcare providers available 7 days a week to address the medical needs of our patients.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cigarette use among high school students–United States, 1991-2005. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2006; 55:724.
2012 US Surgeon General’s Report: Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults. Available at: http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/library/reports/preventing-youth-tobacco-use/ (Accessed on August 22, 2019).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Health effects of cigarette smoking. Available at:http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/effects_cig_smoking/index.htm (Accessed on August 23, 2019).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). High school students who tried to quit smoking cigarettes–United States, 2007. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2009; 58:428.
Costello DM, Dierker LC, Jones BL, Rose JS. Trajectories of smoking from adolescence to early adulthood and their psychosocial risk factors. Health Psychol 2008; 27:811.
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Selya AS, Dierker L, Rose JS, et al. Early-Emerging Nicotine Dependence Has Lasting and Time-Varying Effects on Adolescent Smoking Behavior. Prev Sci 2016; 17:743.
Chadi N, Schroeder R, Jensen JW, Levy S. Association Between Electronic Cigarette Use and Marijuana Use Among Adolescents and Young Adults: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. JAMA Pediatr 2019; :e192574.
Goldenson NI, Leventhal AM, Stone MD, et al. Associations of Electronic Cigarette Nicotine Concentration With Subsequent Cigarette Smoking and Vaping Levels in Adolescents. JAMA Pediatr 2017; 171:1192.
Pbert L, Farber H, Horn K, et al. State-of-the-art office-based interventions to eliminate youth tobacco use: the past decade. Pediatrics 2015; 135:734.
Collins L, Smiley SL, Moore RA, et al. Physician tobacco screening and advice to quit among U.S. adolescents – National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2013. Tob Induc Dis 2017; 15:2.
McMillen R, O’Connor KG, Groner J, et al. Changes and Factors Associated With Tobacco Counseling: Results From the AAP Periodic Survey. Acad Pediatr 2017; 17:504.
Dr. Vikram Tarugu, M.D, is the CEO of Detox of South Florida, Inc and medical professional focused on addiction. A veteran in the medical field with over 25 years of professional experience. He is a consultant for many South Florida Rehab centers. Patients travel from allover the US to seek his help with addiction and Hepatitis C treatment.
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