Nicotine dependence and role of pharmacist in nicotine addiction control

Fathi M. Sherif

Abstract

Abstract:

There are about one billion smokers in the world and death toll is almost six million people in a year. By 2020, death will increase to more than 70% in some developing countries. The tobacco use is high and is varied from one country to another. Tobacco addiction inhibits any decrease in morbidity and mortality and nicotine dependence is assumed to be present if tolerance, withdrawal and compulsive desire to consume tobacco measures are satisfied. It is well-documented that environmental and genetic factors influence the possibility of nicotine addiction. Thus, action is needed to be taken to avoid this from happening.

     Governments and administrators have to play a vital role in smoking control. People at large needs to be involved in the fight against tobacco.

     Within society, health professionals as physicians and pharmacists have a leading role to play because they practice their profession in particular health-sector. Community pharmacists are in an ideal position as one of the most accessible health care professionals to fulfill fundamental role in public health as key providers of tobacco cessation support and prevention services. Pharmacists have a considerable knowledge of nicotine withdrawal symptoms, dosage and formulation of drugs used in smoking cessation therapy. Pharmacists have the opportunity to advice smokers to stop and some pharmacists with special training will be able to provide them with treatment. Media campaigns (pharmacy and non-pharmacy groups) to encourage smoking cessation and discourage smoking initiation can be useful and effective. With any tobacco-use prevention program, it should always be remembered that long time is needed before success becomes effective and apparent.  

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