2.5 Million Adult People Smoke in Kenya

African Smokers

Latest research demonstrates that there are 2.5 million adult smokers in Kenya, Africa. In a survey conducted by the Global Adults Tobacco, 11.6% told they use tobacco.

The results of the research were released by the Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.

Data shows that In Kenya there are 19.1% male smokers and 4.5% female smokers. Among women, most smokers are teenagers who choose to smoke in order to look cool.

In the research participated 5,376 households countrywide. It found that 7.5% of tobacco users told they started smoking when they were less than 15 years old.

Most of all the researchers are worried about the situation with smoking among young women.

Totally 41.3% of current smokers started smoking at an age between 20-24, while 32.3% started their habit between 17-19 years, 13.5% between 15-16 years.

72.2% of males prefer to smoke cigarettes, 83% of women prefer smokeless tobacco. 92.8% of smokers told they are aware about diseases caused by regular tobacco use. Health PS, Khadijah Kassachoon said that, however, still many do not undestand the consequences of smoking. She called for the implementation of stricter laws to discourage more people from smoking.

Ministry of Health proposes to use graphic health warnings on cigarettes packs, in addition to text warnings.
Experts say that around 50% of smokers start thinking about quitting when they see graphic warnings on cigarette packs. Therefore this is one of most effective ways to reduce smoking rates, especially when the talk is about young people.

88% of repondents told they know that secondhand smoke may have negative effects on body. 97.2% told they support a smoking ban inside restaurants.

Nicholas Muraguri, the chief of Medical Services, told they will launch anti-smoking campaigns to increase awarness about secondhand smoke dangers and importance of smoke-free laws. He told that cigarettes in Kenya are very cheap and namely this makes them affordable to everyone. The research revealed that  current smokers spend an average sh1,072 each month on buying cigarettes, which represents 14.7% of the monthly per capita gross domestic product.

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