Toll of Tobacco in the United States

The Toll of Tobacco in Virginia

Updated Jan. 8, 2015

The Toll of Tobacco in Virginia

High school students who smoke 11.1% (47,700)
Male high school students who use smokeless or spit tobacco 12.8% (females use much lower)
Kids (under 18) who become new daily smokers each year 7,300
Packs of cigarettes bought or smoked by kids each year 9.7 million
Adults in Virginia who smoke 19.0% (1,215,200)


U.S. National Data (2013)

High school smoking rate: 15.7%
Male high school students who use smokeless tobacco: 14.7%
Adult smoking rate 17.8%


Deaths in Virginia from Smoking

Adults who die each year from their own smoking 10,300
Kids now under 18 and alive in Virginia who will ultimately die prematurely from smoking 150,000

Smoking kills more people than alcohol, AIDS, car crashes, illegal drugs, murders, and suicides combined — and thousands more die from other tobacco-related causes — such as fires caused by smoking (more than 1,000 deaths/year nationwide) and smokeless tobacco use.

Smoking-Caused Monetary Costs in Virginia

Annual health care costs in Virginia directly caused by smoking $3.11 billion
Portion covered by the state Medicaid program $485.7 million
Residents' state & federal tax burden from smoking-caused government expenditures $783 per household
Smoking-caused productivity losses in Virginia $3.06 billion

Amounts do not include health costs caused by exposure to secondhand smoke, smoking-caused fires, smokeless tobacco use, or cigar and pipe smoking. Tobacco use also imposes additional costs such as workplace productivity losses and damage to property.

Tobacco Industry Influence in Virginia

Annual tobacco industry marketing expenditures nationwide $8.8 billion
Estimated portion spent for Virginia marketing each year $323.3 million

Published research studies have found that kids are twice as sensitive to tobacco advertising than adults and are more likely to be influenced to smoke by cigarette marketing than by peer pressure. One-third of underage experimentation with smoking is attributable to tobacco company advertising.

View sources of information.

More detailed fact sheets on tobacco's toll in each state are available by emailing