Tobacco use is costly. While there is a significant financial loss due to tobacco use, the cost to a user's health is the most critical cost of using tobacco products. Users may develop increased blood pressure and heart rate, stoke, periodontal disease, chronic lung disease, various cancers, adverse pregnancy outcomes and cardiovascular disease. A voluntary decision to start using tobacco soon initiates changes in the brain that lead to an addiction, making it very difficult for the user to stop using tobacco. But with determination, a user can seek treatment and behavioral therapy that can reverse the addiction.
Of course, the best course is never to start in the first place. Prevention is a key goal in the tobacco-free living focus of the Healthy Base Initiative. Education about the harmful effects of tobacco use does help to deter that first puff or dip. Emphasizing that it is so much easier to never start than to fight the addiction can reduce first-time users. That's one decision that pays a valuable reward: health!