Nearly One Third of Veterans Report Current Tobacco Use

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Approximately 22 percent of smoking veterans polled reported cigarette use.
Approximately 22 percent of smoking veterans polled reported cigarette use.

(HealthDay News) -- Overall, 29.2 percent of veterans report current use of one of five tobacco products, according to research published in the Jan. 12 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Satomi Odani, M.P.H., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues monitored the prevalence of tobacco product use among veterans based on self-reported current use of five tobacco product types (cigarettes, cigars, roll-your-own tobacco, pipes, and smokeless tobacco) from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health.

The researchers found that 29.2 percent of veterans reported current use of any of the tobacco products. The most commonly used tobacco product was cigarettes (21.6 percent), followed by cigars, smokeless tobacco, roll-your-own tobacco, and pipes (6.2, 5.2, 3.0, and 1.5 percent, respectively); 7.0 percent of veterans currently used two or more products. Higher current use of any of the assessed tobacco products was seen for those aged 18 to 25 years (56.8 percent), Hispanics (34.0 percent), persons with less than a high school education (37.9 percent), those with annual family income <$20,000 or living in poverty (44.3 and 53.7 percent, respectively), and those reporting serious psychological distress or with no health insurance (48.2 and 60.1 percent, respectively).

"Expanding the reach of evidence-based tobacco control interventions among veterans could reduce tobacco use prevalence in this population," the authors write.

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