On 31 May 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the global public health champions celebrated World No Tobacco Day. The focus of this year’s World No Tobacco Day is on protecting young people from the marketing of big tobacco companies and helping them avoid using tobacco and nicotine. According to WHO, tobacco use kills more than 8 million people around the world each year, a number that is predicted to grow unless anti-tobacco actions are elevated. Tobacco use is the largest preventable cause of death and disease. It causes many types of cancer, as well as heart disease, stroke, lung disease, and other health problems.
Associate Professor Aumkhae Sookprasert, Head, Oncology in Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University explains the negative effect of tobacco and encourage people to stop smoking. In the long term effect, Tar in cigarettes coats the lungs and can cause lung and throat cancer in smokers. Unfortunately, it is not just smokers who are putting their health at risk. Through what is termed second-hand smoke, or passive smoking, smokers are also harming strangers or their loved ones. Passive smoking occurs when a person who is not smoking breathes in the smoke from people who are smoking. Passive smoking can irritate the eyes and nose and also cause a number of health problems such as heart disease and lung cancer. Tobacco smoke is especially harmful to babies and young children.
Each year, the WHO sponsors this awareness day to highlight the health risks of using tobacco and to actions that help reduce smoking and use of other tobacco products. To stop smoking, you will be able to protect the health of your non-smoking friends and family. The understanding and the commitment that we will continue working shoulder-to-shoulder to help societies break free from the chains of tobacco and nicotine addiction.
Written by Natakon Naowarojna, International Relations Officer
Edited by: Dr. Jutarop Phetcharaburanin, Miss Duangsamorn Chankwang and
Miss Kanokphorn Hinthao, International Relations Division, Research and International Relations Affairs, Faculty of Medicine, Khon Kaen University