Irish people smoke on average 15 cigarettes a day, according to a new study from a smoking support service.
Ireland has one of the highest rates of smoking-related deaths in Europe with around 5,500 people a year losing their lives.
Despite the worrying statistic, the study found that more than 25pc of people who smoke do so with a pre-existing medical condition.
More than half of people who use Boots Ireland’s ‘Stop for Good’ service (56pc) smoke between 11 and 20 cigarettes a day, while almost one-in-five women who smoke burn through more than 21 cigarettes a day.
The study found that almost one in every three women in Ireland now smoke, despite the fact that more women die from lung cancer than breast cancer.
The Boots survey found that around 73pc of women are actively seeking support to quit, while one-in-ten beat the habit by the end of the company’s 12-week programme.
Susan O’Dwyer, a pharmacist for Boots Ireland, said that despite the number of smokers dropping in recent years, it is still a major public health concern.
“While the prevalence of smoking has begun to fall in recent years, smoking continues to be a major public health concern in Ireland.
“The initial findings of the study are positive as they reveal that with support services, users have a real chance at beating the habit. With a quit rate of almost one-in-10 it also shows the difficulties faced by smokers when trying to quit.”