Low Socioeconomic Status: Tobacco Use and Cigarette Smoking

Cigarette Smoking

Who is the low socioeconomic status? These are adults that are unemployed or do not have sufficient educational attainment. They are usually classified like this as those with blue-collar jobs. This category of people lives below the poverty level in the United State.

According to research, this group of the U.S population is also identified to have an increased rate of tobacco usage and cigarette smoking than the general population.

Adverse Effect of Cigarette and Tobacco Use

For many decades now there has been an outcry from the health sector on how harmful cigarette smoking and tobacco use can be on the health of its users.

This outcry led to the disclaimer on some cigarette brands stating that ‘smoking is harmful to the health.’ However, despite this disclaimer vaping has been on the increase.

The low socioeconomic class suffer more from these harmful effects than the higher socioeconomic class and here are some of the findings;

– The low-income class has a higher risk of lung cancer than the affluent class.

– Those with less educational attainment have more incidence of lung cancer than those who graduated from college.

– There is less access to basic health care for low socioeconomic class and this means they are more likely to get diagnosed late.

– Rural area livers have been discovered to have about a 20% increased rate of cancer of the lungs than urban area dwellers.

– It was also discovered that those with an income of less than $12,200 may have an increased incidence of respiratory cancer than those with an income of $50,000 and above.

Maybe this can be attributed to ignorance, but it’s a sad reality that these lower-class people smoke even more. Let look at what the statistic says about this;

– Poor people smoke twice as much as those living above the poverty line.

– Those with high school diploma smoke twice as much as those with the least college degree.

– White-collar workers start smoking later and less heavily than blue-collar workers.

Passive Smokers

Asides from the active smokers, that is, those who actively engage in activities of smoking, there is a second category of smokers called passive smokers. These people are smokers under their exposure to active smokers.

Again, the low socioeconomic status people are more exposed than those of the higher status. The low SES people have higher chances of developing health conditions from this smoke exposure. Service workers, like wait staff and bartenders, are also at an increased risk as their workplace has no smoke-free policy.

Target Population

The tobacco and cigarette companies in a bid to stay in business target the low SES population more. Researchers found more tobacco retailers in poverty-stricken neighborhoods than in high-income areas.

If the issue of tobacco and cigarette vaping will be addressed, then the government and NGOs will have to deal with the grass-root problems of which poverty and unemployment are paramount.

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