Smokers believe that “light” and “mild” cigarettes aren’t as detrimental to their health as regular cigarettes, says GlaxoSmithKline Consumer HealthCare.
In a survey conducted by GlaxoSmithCline, nearly half of respondents who said that they smoked “light” cigarettes indicated that they do so because they believe they are less harmful. More than one-third of the survey’s respondents misunderstood how “light” cigarettes affect their health.
“Repackaged light cigarettes with different colors are just as deadly as packs bearing the lights descriptors,” said Saul Shiffman, Ph.D., professor in the departments of psychology and pharmaceutical science at the University of Pittsburgh and Senior Scientific Advisor at Pinney Associates.
According to the National Cancer Institute, many smokers chose so-called “low-tar,” “mild,” “light” or “ultralight” cigarettes because they thought these cigarettes contained less tar and would be less harmful to their health. However, “light” cigarettes are no safer than regular cigarettes. Truthfully, if the smoker takes long, deep, or frequent puffs, tar contents in a “light” cigarette can be just as high as regular cigarettes.
According to the American Cancer Society, health risks associated with smoking include lung disease, heart disease, emphysema, aneurysms, bronchitis, stroke, and lung cancer. The ACS says that 9 out of 10 lung cancer deaths are due to smoking and it is one of the hardest cancers to treat.
In addition to the obvious health risks of using tobacco, smokers will pay more for life insurance because of its link to high mortality risk.