4 Surprising Ways Tobacco Use Is Harming More than Your Health

By Jenny McCoy

October 21, 2016   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man


It’s no secret that smoking is bad for your health, but did you know that it negatively affects many other important aspects of your life, too? It’s true. Lighting up harms a shocking number of things, from your future earning potential to your relationships, the environment and even your pets.

Here are four little-known ways that smoking hurts more than just your lungs.

Smokers Earn 20% Less Than Non-Smokers


Research shows that people who smoke earn 20% less than people who DON’T smoke. This is a lot and translates to around $10,000 worth of loss of income per year!

Now that $10K doesn’t even factor in the cost of cigarettes which costs a pack-a-day smoker an average of $2,193 a year. This “smoker’s wage gap” is significant, but few are aware of it. A study conducted by Truth Initiative revealed that 88% of young adults aged 15-25 years old were ignorant of this wage gap.

If you’re a current smoker, or are tempted to try it in the future, think of all the things—and awesome experiences with friends—you sacrifice by spending and losing your dough on cigs.

Smokers Are Viewed As Less Attractive Than Non-Smokers

Can posting a smoking pic take you from a “10” to a “2”?

Researchers looked into the data from online dating apps and discovered that profile photos showing a person smoking get almost twice as many “left swipes” or declines when compared to photos not showing any sign of smoking.

A well-known youth tobacco prevention campaign called Truth released a humorous yet eye-opening music video titled “Left Swipe Dat”. The music video showed why these smoking profile photos were getting rejections on social media and online dating sites.

Pets With Owners Who Smoke Are Twice As Likely To Get Cancer

Secondhand smoke doesn’t just harm people. It extends to our beloved furry friends as well.

This is an issue near and dear to the hearts of the majority of us as approximately 60% of millennial households own pets. Truth released a video earlier this year that brought this fact to life by illustrating the unthinkable: a world without cats and thus an Internet without cat videos.

The message is a serious one: smoking equals no cats; no cats equals no cat videos. #CATmageddon. If your own health isn’t reason enough to stay away from cigs, consider your innocent, furry BFF’s health.

See Also: 8 Tips for Coping with Pet Loss

4.5 Trillion Cigarette Butts Are Littered Worldwide Each Year


Did you know, cigarettes are the most littered item on earth? Now think of all the chemicals coming out of these cigarette butts seeping into the Earth and poisoning living things and micro-organisms. Another reason we need to end smoking – to help Mother Earth.

The current state of tobacco use and how you can get involved

Tobacco use remains the number one cause of preventable death in this country. Almost half-a-million Americans will die from tobacco-related causes this year, and one in three youth smokers will eventually die from tobacco-related diseases.

truth, the award winning youth tobacco prevention campaign, uses surprising, important facts about the unexpected impact of tobacco use to rally this generation of teens to end tobacco use for good.

Teen cigarette use is down to a historic low of 7 percent (down from 23 percent in 2000) and truth remains committed to the cause until the rate is zero.

To enlist in the fight to end smoking for good, visit thetruth.com or follow @truthorange on Twitter.

See Also: 16 Essential Tips for Quitting Smoking

Jenny McCoy

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