Tobacco: What Is It and Why Do People Continue to Use It?

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In this issue of MEDSURG Nursing, we are fortunate to have an article written by a nursing expert in the areas of tobacco use, addiction, and abstinence. Dr. Lewis provides an overview of the prevalence of tobacco use and the risks of exposure to tobacco and second-hand smoke for both adults and adolescents. He explains the challenges surrounding smoking cessation and encourages abstinence, starting at the grade school level. He concludes by emphasizing that nurses can provide a vital role in addressing this continued public health crisis. Additionally, Web sites that contain valuable information regarding smoking are included. A future article in MEDSURG Nursing will focus on tobacco cessation programs, new national guidelines, and policy implications.—Linda H. Yoder, PhD, MBA, RN, AOCN®, FAAN

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