Tobacco: still 12 million smokers in France

Home Tobacco: still 12 million smokers in France
Written by Doug Hampton

On the occasion of World No Tobacco Day, this May 31, Public Health France publishes the figures for smoking in France. After a drop in consumption between 2016 and 2019, consumption has since stabilized… but at a high level. Today, France still has 12 million daily smokers!

Each year, Public Health France estimates the prevalence of smoking and its evolution compared to the previous year. “After an unprecedented drop in smoking between 2016 and 2019 (from 29.4% to 24.0% in mainland France), the prevalence has stabilized since 2019“, notes the institution. Thus, in 2022, more than three out of ten people aged 18 to 75 said they smoked and a quarter did so daily (24.5%).

A revealer of inequalities

But what is striking in this report are the social inequalities in terms of smoking. Thus, the prevalence remains significantly higher when the level of qualification is lower. “EIt varies from 30.8% among people with no diploma or a diploma below the baccalaureate to 16.8% among those with a diploma above the baccalaureate“, continues Public Health France. “It is also the highest among the third of the population with the lowest incomes. Finally, among 18-64 year olds, the prevalence of daily smoking remains significantly higher among unemployed people (42.3%), than among employed workers (26.1%) or students (19.1%). .

So how do you explain this resumption of smoking and these social gaps? For Public Health France, “an impact of the health, social and economic crisis linked to Covid-19 cannot be excluded concerning the interruption of the decline in the prevalence of smoking and the increase observed among certain populations.”

The desire to stop…

Finally, the barometer data show that among daily smokers, three out of five say they want to quit smoking, three out of ten plan to do so in the next six months and one out of three has made an attempt to quit smoking. at least one week in the last twelve months. But for more than nine out of ten smokers, the will is not enough and quitting alone does not work. Without support, 97% of smokers are unable to quit. This accompaniment by a health professional is one of the key factors for success.

To note : tobacco remains the first preventable cause of death in France with 75,000 deaths attributable to it in 2015.

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