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Project Mission Tobacco Use Prevention


Tobacco Use and Effects

Commercial Tobacco Use Among the Navajo People

18% of Navajo youth (grades 5-6th) are chewing smokeless tobacco.
56% of Navajo youth (grades 9th & 10th) are chewing smokeless tobacco.
28% of Navajo men (ages 15-24) are smoking cigarettes daily.
37% of Navajo men (ages 20-39) are chewing smokeless tobacco.
31% of Navajo women (ages 20-39) are chewing smokeless tobacco.

Negative Effects of Cigarette Use

Cigarette smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death in the United States, accounting for approximately 1 of 5 deaths (438,000 people) each year.

Lung cancer - a smoking related disease - is the leading cause of cancer related deaths in the U.S.

There are no safe levels of exposure to secondhand smoke and there is no available adequate ventilation technology based upon scientific studies that can ensure the protection and prevention of secondhand commercial tobacco smoke health-related illnesses.

Secondhand smoke has been classified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a Group A carcinogen. This classification is reserved for chemicals or compounds, which have been shown to cause cancer in humans such as asbestos and benzene.

Children exposed to secondhand smoke have an increased risk of asthma, respiratory infections, sudden infant death syndrome, developmental abnormalities, and cancer. Secondhand smoke is particularly hazardous to elderly people, individuals with cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and individuals with impaired respiratory function, including asthmatics and those with obstructive airway disease.

For more information about SNTEPP, please contact Pete Nez, the Program Manager. pfnez@bhcaih.org, or 1-928-289-6483.


Black Hills Center for American Indian Health   –   701 St. Joseph Street Suite 204 Rapid City, SD 57701.  605-348-6100   –   Copyright 2009. All Rights Reserved.