The contribution of human activities and behaviors to the risk of a world epidemic

In the past 3 decades, the weather forecasting community has made significant advances in data collection, assimilating heterogeneous data steams into models and communicating the uncertainty of their predictions to the general public. Epidemic modelers are struggling with these same issues in forecasting the spread of emerging diseases, such as Zika virus infection and Ebola virus disease.

The contribution of human activities and behaviors to the risk of a world epidemic

Although epidemiologic data on the relationships between these behaviors and various health outcomes were available in the early s, many refinements in knowledge have occurred since then. This chapter summarizes the important recent epidemiologic evidence on the health effects of these behaviors.

Nonsmoking people are not immune to tobacco's health hazards, inasmuch as exposure to second-hand smoke has serious health consequences for adults and children USDHHS,; U. Although cigarette-smoking among adults leveled off in the s, tobacco use among adolescents increased in that period USDHHS, That cigarette-smoking among younger people has increased is particularly alarming for several reasons.

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Curbing or eradicating tobacco use might remain a daunting task. Prevention is the primary objective, but many benefits are associated with smoking cessation, and such efforts should not be ignored.

Measuring the Public Health Burden of Cigarette-Smoking There is widespread agreement in the public health and medical communities that cigarette-smoking is the biggest external nongenetic contributor to death in the United States.

Deaths attributable to tobacco use have been found to exceed deaths from acquired immunodeficiency syndrome AIDStraffic accidents, alcohol use, suicide, homicide, fire, and use of illegal drugs combined IOM, One World Health Organization report showed that the burden of disease and death attributable to tobacco in developed countries was substantially higher than that attributable to any other risk factor, including alcohol use, unsafe sex, hypertension, and physical inactivity Murray and Lopez, Because there is a long delay between the onset of persistent smoking and the full development of its adverse health consequences, current tobacco-attributable mortality and morbidity are consequences of smoking that began decades ago.

Smoking causes cancers of the lung, larynx, esophagus, pharynx, mouth, and bladder, and contributes to cancer of the pancreas, kidney, and cervix USDHHS, Tobacco use is the leading contributor to lung cancer incidence, and refraining from smoking could prevent most lung cancer cases National Cancer Institute, ; NCHS, b.

An estimatednew cases are diagnosed each year, and lung cancer causes an estimateddeaths each year NCHS, b. Smoking also causes other lung diseases, such as chronic bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease USDHHS, Pregnancy complications associated with maternal smoking include premature detachment of the placenta, development of the placenta in the lower uterine segment, which can cause hemorrhaging in the last trimester; bleeding during pregnancy; premature membrane rupture; and premature delivery.

Maternal smoking also has been associated with spontaneous abortions and low birthweight DiFranza and Lew, ; Hebel et al. Evidence indicates that in some groups of pregnant women smoking one to six cigarettes a day increases by about two-thirds the risk of giving birth to a low birthweight infant LeClere and Wilson, ; Ventura et al.

Smoking in the last few weeks of pregnancy has the biggest impact on fetal weight gain. Women who stop smoking before becoming pregnant or who quit in the first 3—4 months of pregnancy have infants of the same birthweight as those born to women who never smoked.

Women who stop smoking later in pregnancy have higher birthweight infants than do women who smoke throughout pregnancy. The complex issues associated with the real and perceived risk of tobacco and tobacco harm-reduction products are explored in an IOM report Second-hand smoke exposure also has been linked to increased risk of heart disease among adults Glantz and Parmely, ; Howard et al.

Data gathered in a study of the U. A study showed that home and workplace environments contribute significantly to the widespread exposure to second-hand smoke in the United States Pirkle et al.

Socioeconomic Characteristics of Smokers Although smoking among adults declined steadily from the middle s through the s, it leveled off in the s USDHHS, Cigarette-smoking was about twice as common among poor men and women as among more affluent persons in NCHS, a. One study showed that non-Hispanic White and African Americans living in poverty were more likely to smoke than were people with middle and high incomes in NCHS, a.

Sociodemographic risk factors include low socioeconomic status of one's family. Environmental risk factors include accessibility and availability of tobacco products, cigarette advertising and promotion, the price of tobacco products, perceptions that tobacco use is normative, use and approval of tobacco use by peers and siblings, and lack of parental involvement.Changing sedentary behavior.

Similar to physical activity, there is a lack of consensus in the literature regarding how to successfully change sedentary behavior and maintain that change over time. Interventions that have aimed to decrease sedentary behavior by .

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Human activity puts Earth’s systems at risk 16 January Four of the nine systems that regulate the interaction between land, ocean, atmosphere, ice-sheets and life on Earth are at risk from destabilisation due to human activity, according to an international team including UCL scientists.

As a result of these and other factors, the Ebola virus has behaved differently in West Africa than in equatorial Africa, challenging a number of previous assumptions. In past outbreaks, amplification of infections in health care facilities was the principal cause of initial explosive spread.

In the United States, the percentage of children and adolescents affected by obesity has more than tripled since the s. 1 Data from show that nearly 1 in 5 school age children and young people (6 to 19 years) in the United States has obesity.

2 Obesity is defined as having excess body fat. 3 Body mass index (BMI) is a widely used screening tool for measuring obesity.

Obesity is a complex health issue to address. Obesity results from a combination of causes and contributing factors, including individual factors such as behavior and genetics. Behaviors can include dietary patterns, physical activity, inactivity, medication use, and other exposures.

The contribution of human activities and behaviors to the risk of a world epidemic

Additional. Jun 18,  · The developing world has a large number of people living with HIV/AIDS. Learn about the factors influencing the spread of HIV/AIDS in the developing countries, and Reviews:

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