Children and pets have been accidentally poisoned by eating cigarette butts.
In North America, Aboriginal people introduced tobacco to European explorers and settlers. Tobacco use quickly spread back to Europe. Before the 20th century, tobacco was mostly used for chewing, pipe or cigar smoking, or sniffing as snuff.
James Bonsack developed a cigarette-rolling machine in the 1880s. This invention led to the mass production of cigarettes. This made cigarettes much more readily available. The invention of matches also made it easy to light up any time. More and more people started smoking – and also getting sick.
Who uses tobacco?
- In 2005, one-third (33%) of Ontario students in grades 7 to 12 said they had tried a cigarette at some time.
- One in seven students (14%) said they had smoked cigarettes during the last year. This is almost 140,000 students.
- Most students (67%) have never smoked—not even a puff!
- Rates of smoking were similar for both male (14%) and female students (15%).
- More than half (58%) of the students who smoked had tried to quit smoking in the past year.
- True or false: If you use tobacco but don’t actually smoke it, it’s not bad for you.
- True or false: Tobacco kills 3,700 Canadians every year.
- Who do you think has the hardest time quitting?
- A person giving up nicotine
- A person giving up heroin
- A person giving up alcohol.
- False. Both snuff and chewing tobacco contain nicotine and other cancer-causing chemicals. While snuff doesn’t cause respiratory diseases, it causes cancer of the mouth, gum disease and other problems.
- False. A recent report puts the annual death toll from tobacco at about 37,000 Canadians.
- Believe it or not, all three have about the same rate of failure.