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West Virginia
23.8%
Kentucky
23.6%
Louisiana
21.9%
Ohio
20.8%
Mississippi
20.4%
Alabama
20.2%
Arkansas
20.2%
Tennessee
19.9%
Missouri
19.6%
Indiana
19.2%
Oklahoma
18.9%
Michigan
18.7%
North Carolina
18.5%
Wyoming
18.4%
South Dakota
18.3%
Maine
17.6%
South Carolina
17.5%
Alaska
17.4%
Pennsylvania
17.3%
North Dakota
17.0%
Montana
16.6%
Iowa
16.4%
Georgia
16.3%
Kansas
16.2%
New Mexico
16.0%
Delaware
15.9%
New Hampshire
15.9%
Nevada
15.7%
Wisconsin
15.4%
Idaho
15.3%
Vermont
15.1%
Arizona
14.9%
Florida
14.8%
Nebraska
14.7%
Texas
14.7%
Minnesota
14.6%
Illinois
14.5%
Oregon
14.5%
Virginia
14.0%
Colorado
13.5%
Rhode Island
13.3%
New Jersey
13.1%
DC
12.7%
Maryland
12.7%
New York
12.7%
Washington
12.6%
Hawaii
12.3%
Connecticut
12.1%
Massachusetts
12.0%
California
10.0%
Utah
7.9%

Smoking Rates by State 2023

Smoking Rates by State 2023

Tobacco is the common name of several plants of the Nicotiana genus and is the general term for any product made using cured tobacco leaves, such as cigarettes. Because tobacco contains nicotine, it can become addictive and users often find it difficult to quit using tobacco products. According to the World Health Organization, tobacco kills more than 8 million people per year, including both smokers and those who are exposed to second-hand smoke. In the United States, tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death. Tobacco use increases the risk of several health problems. These include blood clots, coronary heart disease, heart attacks, certain types of cancer, and lung disease. Tobacco use also leads to tooth and gum decay and wrinkled skin.

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), there are disparities in tobacco use between socioeconomic classes. “In the U.S., people living below the poverty level and people having lower levels of educational attainment have higher rates of cigarette smoking than the general population.” Additionally, those in lower-income areas have less access to primary health care and health insurance, and fewer resources to help them quick smoking, increasing their chances of being diagnosed with later stages of cancer and diseases from smoking. The tobacco industry also systematically target low-income populations and specific demographics with price discounts, direct-mail marketing, and in-store promotions.

West Virginia has the highest rate of tobacco use at 26%. People living in rural areas are more likely to smoke than others and are more likely to consume more than 15 cigarettes per day, according to an analysis by the American Lung Association. West Virginia, and many of the top ten states, all have vast rural areas.

The ten states with the lowest rates of tobacco use, in order, are: Utah (8.90%), Puerto Rico (11.30%), California (11.30%), Connecticut (12.70%), Hawaii (12.80%), Washington (13.50%), Massachusetts (13.70%), New Jersey (13.70%), Maryland (13.80%), and New York (14.10%). Utah has the lowest rate of tobacco use in the United States at 8.9%. Utah is the only state to have a tobacco usage rate in the single digits. Throughout the United States, however, tobacco use has been decreasing over the years thanks to smoke-free policies; increased support and programs to help people quit smoking; and campaigns spreading the awareness of health risks associated with tobacco use.

Here are the 10 states with the highest smoking rates:

  1. West Virginia - 23.8%
  2. Kentucky - 23.6%
  3. Louisiana - 21.9%
  4. Ohio - 20.8%
  5. Mississippi - 20.4%
  6. Alabama - 20.2%
  7. Arkansas - 20.2%
  8. Tennessee - 19.9%
  9. Missouri - 19.6%
  10. Indiana - 19.2%

Smoking Rates by State 2023

Smoking Rates by State 2023

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Smoking Rates by State 2023

Sources