Sample Essay on Relationship Between Education and Smoking

Relationship Between Education and Smoking

            Smoking is acknowledged as one of the leading avertible causes of death and diseases in many nations. In the United States, smoking is the major cause of dying, averaged at 440,000 annually among adults (Koning et al.3). Several studies conducted have attributed to the fact that educated individuals have a better health understanding as compared to illiterate persons. This points towards a possible relationship between the level of education among individuals and the smoking behavior. One of the ways of decreasing the rate of smoking among people is through establishing policies that are aimed at reducing smoking behaviors. Education is an effective policy in reducing the rate of smoking among population since it enhances greater cognizance of health risks associated with this habit. Thus, the interdependence between smoking rates and people’s education should be established.

Education and Smoking

In relation to health matters, it is apparent that educated individuals exhibit high outcomes through embracing better and healthier conducts. According to Smith, education, which increases the chances of one’s income, wealth, and a better life, encourages finer living standards and behaviors (739). Currently, there are several disparities in the society including not only gender and race discrimination but also the gap between the rich and the poor among others. Nonetheless, cigarette smoking as a result of differences in education represents another major inequality in the society. In the United States, for instance, smoking is the prominent behavioral cause of death with smoking-associated diseases responsible for approximately one out of every five deaths annually (Maralani 21). However, smoking and its effects are even more prevalent among individuals with low level of education. According to report by the CDC published in 2012, about a quarter of individuals with high school or less education standard were smoking as compared to 20% of those with an associate degree (Maralani 21). Therefore, educational differences in smoking is a vital concern to the public.

Background Information

There have been several emerging arguments among many scholars on whether the question of education has an underlying impact on the rate of smoking. Alongside main topics associated with the issue of education and smoking there have been undetected characters, for example, how much people appreciate both their current and future health status. According to Farrell and Fuchs, the link between one’s understanding of his/her current wellbeing and future expectations in terms of health, which is influenced by education, is a great component applied in relating education and smoking traits (3). Consequently, several other studies have been conducted using statistical methodologies to address possible relationship between education and smoking. Taking the nature of the issue into account, it is apparent that the focus on education will be on minors who mature to adults. Furthermore, the contributory evaluations of smoking in relation to education is only associated with two main tenets: smoking and quitting. Therefore, if education is among the fundamental contributory effects on smoking, then there are two major key factors (initiation and quitting) that should lie in the focus of the study.

There are several ways in which the two appliances function. This is because there is a discrete understanding of the affiliation between education and smoking. For example, an individual being at school may encourage their peers to never smoke regularly hence triggering an initiation. In this case, the appliance associating education and smoking would be functional among the adolescents earlier than one completes his/her education.

On the other hand, high level of education could also make an individual who has been smoking stop. This appliance is active among the adult population and is likely to be experienced when an individual has finished school. Regardless of their comparative input in establishing the issue of educational gap in regards to smoking, such appliances attest to the different phases in life that individuals go through. However, they are important for explaining the impact of educational differences on smoking. Despite the fact that educated adults are more likely to quit smoking, the variations in the rate of stopping is different when the education level varies (de Walque 878).

Tobacco Use Among the Uneducated

Generally, there is a direct relationship between smoking and the age of an individual that also influence the income level. Smoking has largely been associated with populations with lower incomes and fewer years of education. Initially, most of the Americans with higher income and education levels used to smoke at high-school compared to the less educated. For example, 26.1 percent of the adult population in the United States, who are below the poverty level, smoke, at the same time, 24.2 percent did not graduate from high school (Bach 1). As a result of the smoking behavior, the less educated and less income level individuals smoke more, hence extremely affected by smoking-caused diseases.

Besides contracting chronic illnesses such as stroke, heart disease, and diabetes, smoking is also an acknowledged cause of cancer (Bach 2). It is approximated that more than 130,000 men and women die as a result of smoking instigated lung cancer annually (Bach 2). Additionally, nations with low educational achievement levels are affected by the highest tobacco-associated cancer incidences and death rates (Bach 2). Smoking is also related to high rates of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and accompanying cardiovascular diseases (Bach 2). Individuals with lower than a high school education were found to have increased lung cancer incidences as compared to people with at least a college degree.

Since tobacco smoking rates have reduced among the highly-educated population, the tobacco sector is gradually depending on low educated and thus low-income groups, which make up the bigger part of the consumer base. The organizations utilize the low educated target hence undermining the strategies aimed at reducing cases of smoking. Generally, individuals with lower education and addiction to smoking behavior are less likely to quit as compared to the highly-educated smokers. In most cases, the percentage of smokers who have stopped is higher among the educated as compared to the uneducated individuals. As a result of this tendency, the proportion of those who quit this habit is much higher among college degree holders if contrasted to that group of people who failed to finish high-school (Bach 3). Overall, the more educated a person is the less likely they are to keep smoking. For example, in 2012, 39 percent of grown persons with less than a high school degree quit smoking as compared to 49 percent of individuals with a college degree (Bach 3). Making people aware of dangers that tobacco-addiction brings is among the ways applied to trigger the highly-educated population to quit smoking. This strategy may lead to a reduction of the smoking rates since people become more sensitive to their health status.

Understanding the Relationship Between Education and Smoking

Schools have successfully played a crucial role in reducing smoking among their students through creation of an environment, which has encouraged anti-tobacco beliefs and behaviors. The process entailed in formal education is intricate and multidimensional, which is attained over a long period of time and involve several spheres. Educational accomplishment encompasses several curricular provisions and choices, noble environments, institutional procedures, knowledge skills, for instance, reading, writing, logical thinking, and making significant shifts. These elements, coupled with collaboration with children’s parents, are crucial for creating a definite educational status. The total amount of time spent at school by an individual defines the coarse outline of this whole process. For a better understanding of the relationship between smoking and education, the latter should be splatted into various comprehensive characteristics estimated among the adolescence and adults. This exhaustive methodology enhances the mapping of a hypothetical mechanism between education and health issues caused by smoking (Maralani 23).

In terms of data, it is apparent that educational institutions provide important health information in many ways. Firstly, health education is offered through direct classroom guidelines on health-allied content. Moreover, there many other places including educational centers that provide people with all necessary information about their health and effects of smoking on it. Most academic affiliations have forbidden health risk conducts like tobacco smoking, alcohol, and substance use by students and staff members within the given facility. Other learning institutions also have put in place different forms of penances for faculty and learners who contravene the set guidelines and rules. Therefore, education institutions, which have in place strict and ascetic consequences for smoking, force students as well as staff members to quit smoking completely for fear of being banned from the institution for violating its rules and regulations.  On the other hand, such approach may cause some students to leave school if they do not want to quit smoking. However, in most cases, the effects will have a positive effect on students’ lives since they will incorporate the notion that smoking is bad and harmful to their lives (Maralani 23).

Students, in most cases, are enrolled in schools to develop analytical skills. Schools also offer a number of that prompt learner’s judgments and enhance a sense of taste for education, these courses include Literature and Music among others. Besides, higher education also provides students with crucial skills that include, for instance, figuring, reading logically, argumentative writing, and reading. In this regard, learning institutions enable students to be smarter as compared to the individuals who do not go to school. The capability and knowledge an individual attains in learning institutions predominantly develop their personal IQ with time henceforth defining the transformations skills he/she accomplishes in schools (Maralani 23). Consequently, it is ordinary that individuals who attend school and go through the learning curriculum through taking subjects like mathematics and sciences are in a better position to gain more aptitude and intellectual skills. Accordingly, these rational skills help the characters to consistently make better informed health-related decisions, for instance, not to smoke.

In regard to social networking, formal school education unites individuals from different cultures and backgrounds together. These individuals, by offering both positive and negative impacts, form a significant component of a school and thus share their health understandings with others. For example, in institutions where girls take up male dominated subjects like mathematics and other sciences, they influence other girls from gender marginalized places to take up the challenge with no fear of victimization (Riegle-Crumb et al. 206). This positive impact is attained through the population’s influence. In the same way, having students or even faculty members who smoke can influence one to start smoking in institutions of higher education. Similarly, the same may happen in a non-smoking environment, where individuals quit this habit because there is nobody else who smokes.

Individuals’ future expectations are also important in determining smoking behavior. In as much as it is difficult to evaluate the mechanism of how individuals contemplate about the present contrasted with the future, education plays a critical role. Therefore, better future expectations among students that are instilled in school can trigger those who smoke to opt for higher education and quit smoking. Consequently, it is significant to enhance positive future expectations among children and students early in their lives, before they begin getting introduced to smoking behaviors (Riegle-Crumb et al. 214).

Schools also offer inclusive tobacco deterrence education that has played a significant role in reducing the rate of smoking. School-grounded education curricula that prevent and reduce smoking have been incorporated and effectively applied. To ensure effective impacts of the programs, schools have established a comprehensive approach to all components of tobacco use, for instance, short- and long-term negative health implications, negative social penalties, and negative peer pressure among other effects of smoking. Furthermore, since it is not enough to provide anti-tobacco education at a particular period of the students’ life, learning institutions also offer smoking instruction and guidance all through their educational experience.

It is apparent that operative youth tobacco deterrence programs are grade and age sensitive. The most delicate age group that is likely to initiate smoking is teenagers. Among these populations, learning institutions offer prevention strategies through training for teachers. As such, when teachers are adequately equipped to offer a tobacco prevention program, the accomplishment of the overall program is momentously enhanced (Bach 2). Adequate training among instructors involves curriculum content that speaks against smoking behaviors, the process also incorporates families.

Moreover, many individuals start smoking while still young. Since smoking is addictive, many people struggle to quit. In this regard, schools play a significant role in offering operational termination help to the students and other faculty members who smoke. Despite the fact that not all schools provide such programs, they still may supply the addicts with important information from community-based cessation programs and introduce program representatives in the learning institutions. This provides a significant step in reducing the behaviors of smoking among students and other social groups.

Generally, learning institutions offer an exceptionally powerful position that plays a crucial role in decreasing the smoking rates among individuals, mainly the minors. Under normal circumstances, most children spend most of their time in school. Therefore, most of the good and bad behaviors are learned through peer pressure. It is also likely that the majority of adult smokers begin to smoke while still minors. In some instances, however, smoking may also begin long before junior schooling among minors (Bach 2). The aforementioned habit has some bad implications on the health of individuals, more so for the minors who are still developing. Therefore, if the rate of smoking will continue to prevail among children, it may lead to the loss of many young lives as a result of smoking-related ailments. Furthermore, as cab deduced from the above, tobacco and other forms of smoking are addictive behaviors. Therefore, minors who are still experiencing significant periods of growth and development are vulnerable to become dependent on these substances. Indicators of solemn addiction can result in the individuals’ longer use of and dependence on smoking characterized by daily or even hourly rate of smoking.




Summing it up, it is apparent from the current paper that a higher academic accomplishment enhances the likelihood of smoking cessation. Increased rate of education decreases the period of smoking among individuals. As people get more literate, they increase their thinking rationale. They become more conscious about their lives and future expectations physically, mentally, and socially. The main reason many people keep studying after finishing highschool is to be successful in life and have bright future. Therefore, no one will toil and struggle in school and thereafter become a failure because of an avoidable issue like smoking. Furthermore, higher education increases one’s awareness of the implications of smoking on health. As a result of the higher education’s influence, an individual easily adopts a changed life behavioral pattern and stops smoking. Schooling also influences one to drop this habit through positive influence from school regulations and other peers who offer significant information that triggers an individual to quit. Therefore, as individuals increase their education, they are more likely to stop smoking.

Works Cited

Bach, Laura. “Tobacco and Socioeconomic Status.” Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. 12 Jan. 2017, Accessed 19 March 2017.

De Walque, Damien. “Does Education Affect Smoking Behaviors? Evidence Using the Vietnam Draft as an Instrument for College Education.” Journal of Health Economics, vol. 26, no. 5, 2007, pp. 877-895.

Farrell, Phillip, and Victor R. Fuchs. “Schooling and Health: the Cigarette Connection.” Journal of Health Economics, vol. 1, no. 3, 1982, pp. 217-230.

Koning, Pierre, Webbink, Dinand, and Nicholas G. Martin. “The Effect of Education on Smoking Behavior: New Evidence From Smoking Durations of a Sample of Twins.” Discussion Paper Series, no. 4796, 2010, pp. 3-35.

Maralani, Vida. “Understanding the Links Between Education and Smoking.” Social Science Research, vol. 48, 2014, pp. 20-34.

Riegle-Crumb, Catherine, George Farkas, and Chandra Muller. “The Role of Gender and Friendship in Advanced Course Taking.” Sociology of Education, vol. 79, no. 3, 2006, pp. 206-228.

Smith, James P. “The Impact of Socioeconomic Status on Health Over the Life-Course.” Journal of Human Resources, vol. 42, no. 4, 2007, pp. 739-764.