Can money loss encourage smokers to quit?

By Will Morton, DrBicuspid.com contributing writer

January 12, 2023 -- The true per-person cost of smoking in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia may encourage tobacco users in the U.S. to kick the habit, according to a report by personal finance website WalletHub.

The report details the real cost of smoking by state, including both the lifetime and annual cost of a cigarette pack per day, healthcare expenditures, income losses, and other costs, brought on by smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke.

Key findings of the report included the following:

  • The estimated financial cost of smoking over a lifetime is just above $2.8 million per smoker.
  • The average out-of-pocket cost per smoker is $147,408 over a lifetime. Smokers in New York pay the highest cost, $209,539, which is two times higher than in Missouri, where smokers will pay the lowest cost at $107,047.
  • A smoker will incur an average of $561,990 in income loss over a lifetime. Smokers in the District of Columbia will lose the highest amount, $784,875, which is two times higher than in Mississippi, where smokers will lose the lowest amount at $401,855.
  • Each smoker will incur an average of $188,869 in smoking-related healthcare costs over a lifetime. Smokers in the District of Columbia will pay the highest amount, $332,526, which is 2.8 times higher than in Arkansas, where smokers will pay the lowest amount at $117,476.

The message that smoking not only ruins one's health but can also burn a nasty hole through one's wallet may encourage the estimated 34.2 million tobacco users in the U.S. to kick the dangerous habit, WalletHub said.

The report includes commentary from experts who shared their insights regarding smoking cessation programs, e-cigarettes, and other smoking-related concerns.


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