The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is going to put new, strongly worded warnings on the packets of cigarettes and very graphic pictures for advertisements in a bid to lower the staggering death and disease rates from smoking. These will include a "smoking kills" warning that says:
"More than 1,200 people a day are killed by cigarettes in the United States alone, and 50 percent of all long-term smokers are killed by smoking-related diseases. Tobacco use is the cause of death for nearly one out of every five people in the United States, which adds up to about 443,000 deaths annually."
Next to this message is a gruesome photo of a deceased man with an autopsy scar down his chest.
Other warning messages include messages about the risk of cancer, the risks to children posed by passive smoking, the risks to unborn babies and the risk of death for non-smokers who breathe in cigarette smoke.
A World Health Organization study found that if a consumer noticed warning messages on cigarette packaging, more than half of them would think about quitting smoking.
They think that if the wording is more explicit with graphic pictures that it will have a significant positive impact in helping people become motivated to quit and will save lives, increase life expectancy and reduce the bill that medical services have.
The new warnings will be introduced in September 2012.
Facts about Cigarette Smoking
• Smoking is the leading cause of death in the U.S. and claims almost half a million lives a year.
• Even passive smokers can die from the effects of cigarette smoke.
• Both smoking and passive smoking can cause cancer, cardiovascular disease and respiratory disease.
• Passive smoking is dangerous to children. Pregnant mothers who smoke or who breathe in other people’s smoke are more likely to give birth to a premature baby.
• Babies of smoking parents are at increased risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).
• Children who passive smoke are at increased risk of respiratory diseases like bronchiolitis and asthma. They also have greater risk of ear infections, neurological problems, developmental delay and behavior disorders.