The story appears on

Page A4

March 24, 2014

GET this page in PDF

Free for subscribers

View shopping cart

Related News

Home » Metro » Health and Science

Women smokers on increase in Shanghai

THE proportion of Shanghai women who smoke has risen significantly in recent years, delegates at a health conference heard over the weekend.

According to the Shanghai International Lung Cancer Forum, while just 3.7 percent of Shanghainese women smoked in 2011, the figure has since increased to 4.8 percent.

The daily stress of work, a desire for thrills and excitement, and peer group pressure were all cited by delegates as reasons for more women taking up smoking.

Lu Jiachen, a 25-year-old office clerk, said she’s been smoking since going to college at 18.

“One day I was in a bad mood after quarreling with my boyfriend,” she said. “A roommate offered me a cigarette and said it would help me feel better.”

Like many women, Lu smoked her first cigarette to calm herself down. Others light up for the first time when they feel lonely or depressed. But for all too many of them, the comforter soon becomes a necessity and addiction takes hold.

Yuan Yin, a 30-something who works in advertising and describes smoking as “cool,” said puffing on a cigarette is a natural thing for people like her who enjoy socializing.

“You see a lot more women smoking in bars than you do on the street,” she said. “Whether or not you smoke is influenced a lot by the circles you move in.”

Unfortunately for Yuan and all other women, smoking significantly increases their chances of developing lung cancer, the forum heard.

The disease is now the third-most deadly strain of cancer among women, according to a recent report by the Shanghai Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Luo Qingquan, a doctor at the Shanghai Chest Hospital, told Shanghai Daily that due to physiological reasons women are more sensitive than men to nicotine and other substances produced by cigarettes.

All women smokers should have a checkup every six months as a precaution against the risk of lung cancer, he said.

Both Yuan and Lu said they are aware of the detrimental effects of smoking on health, but agree it’s hard to give up.

“If I wanted to quit smoking, I would have to break off with my friends,” Yuan said.

Lu, who’s been married for two years, said she wants to quit before starting a family.

But when life gets her down, she said she still reaches for the cigarette packet.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend