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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
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    My mum was a very heavy smoker. She had her first stroke in her early 40's and another one 5 years later. She always believed that smoking isn't as bad as it's made out to be and that she'll smoke until she dies. Well last year her personality started to change and she had another stroke and set her hair on fire, then she was hospitalised for a week. Her brain was too affected this time and a few weeks later she passed away.
    I have always dis liked cigarettes, but after seeing how Mum got I hate them even more. There needs to be more help available to quit.

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    DesperatelySeekingSleep (07-05-2017)

  3. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by gingermillie View Post
    Sorry in advance for the essay but as a public health professional, ex-smoker and being related to someone similar to that in the story I can see all sides of this issue.
    The fact remains that cigarettes are the only legal product that if used as intended will kill 1/2 to 2/3 of those who use them. There is no way that such a product would ever be legalized if discovered now! If the government was truly serious about reducing the long term burden of disease arising from smoking it would have been banned outright years ago. However the tobacco industry and smokers form a powerful bloc and the government reaps significant tax in the form of tobacco excise.
    My father is 66 and was a life-long smoker and 'unable' to quit like the guy in this story. I truly never thought he would. He was a pack-plus a day smoker. When my dd was born I told my parents they weren't to touch or cuddle her if they'd been smoking. Took my mum (who had been an on-off smoker for years) to a SIDS workshop where they explained cigarette smoke as a huge SIDS risk and the way babies snuggle in and breathe in the residual vapors from clothes worn while smoking. This stopped my mum but not my dad. However when dd was about 4 months old he spontaneously quit as he wanted more closeness with her and realized this would come through quitting. I was shocked as he had tried and never succeeded and was a hardened smoker. It's been a year and a half now and he hasn't gone back. I'm so proud, it was super hard work and smoking was a massive part of his life for 50 years. Imagine giving up something you enjoyed and loved after that long!
    It is incredibly hard for people at that stage of life to quit and can take more than 10 times to succeed.
    In my teaching I explain to students that as health professionals the hardest thing we will ever do is try to influence behavior change in individuals. We can all sit back and say 'smoking is gross I would never harm my health in that way'. But how many of us can hand on heart say we don't engage in other health-damaging behaviors like not meeting physical activity guidelines, drinking more than 2 standard drinks a day, not getting our 2&5 every day, never speeding in the car etc? Most people know these things are 'bad' yet still do them so the way to change these behaviours is often not through education (they know it's bad so education has worked) but understanding the drivers of these behaviours (internal and external factors) and working on those.
    So very long story short my point is I choose not to judge smokers as I understand there is a whole bunch of reasons which keep people in that position and on paper it might seem as simple as 'just stop smoking/overeating/drinking booze' but under the surface it's much much harder than that.
    For the record I support the government policy towards tobacco control of denormalisation and believe we will eventually see this creep into alcohol policy over time hopefully as our understanding of the role of alcohol in cancer and other disease grows.
    What's truly revolting is seeing what tobacco companies are getting away with in developing countries right now and the enormous burden of disease we will see in the coming decades as smoking rates are huge and growing in many low income countries. Sorry for the tangent but it's really given no attention and it's a looming public health crisis
    I understand where your coming from.

    On one hand I fully agree with the majority that he should grow up and quit and stop being such a whiner about it.

    On the other hand I think the duty of care on the interviewer to create a thought provoking piece that highlighted certain aspects of the addiction and the governments role in it was highly negligent and thus made a mockery of what could have been a fantastic interview.

    The topic had so much potential to be a thought provoking piece has turned to almost ridiculing the interviewee. But, maybe that was the point. Maybe making a mockery of the excuses some smokers use and how far some are willing to go for a cigarette was the point.

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    gingermillie (11-05-2017),harvs (07-05-2017)

  5. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    I have never been a smoker but I have seen many friends over the years quit smoking. Some found it easy, lots found it hard, some found it ridiculously hard. I do wonder whether there is some kind of chemical makeup in people that makes it harder for some to quit than others. Obviously things like stress and depression, and who you live with and hang out with make a huge difference. Its very hard to quit if your partner smokes, for example.

    I am seriously addicted to coffee. I get a headache if I don't have one in the morning. So I sympathise with people who do have an addiction, especially if they started before it was known how bad the thing actually is for you. Would I give up coffee if I knew it was killing me though? Of course! (I gave it up when pregnant). But ciggies are much more addictive than coffee.

    My Dad took 20 years to quit, although for the last 10 he only smoked about 3 a day. I'm really proud of him for doing that

    While I sympathise with the guy for being addicted, I wouldn't sympathise with him for not paying his rent. Because thats not fair on the landlord! I think he should try to cut down if he is that bad, even if he cant quit.
    Last edited by DynamiteandaLazerBeam; 11-05-2017 at 21:46.

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  7. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    I haven't had a ciggie in 3 years. When I finally did kick the habit after 20 years smoking on and off, it really wasn't that hard. But I truly wanted to give up. The truth is, after 3 years I still crave them. Not constantly but when drinking or stressed out.

    I would like to see them banned. I'm so tired of the govt taking advantage of people's addictions with the insane taxes they make people pay. If they actually put this into quit smoking aids, free hypnosis etc, I'd support it. But the billions a year goes into general revenue. Yes, long term smokers can sometimes be a drain on the health system. But many, like me, have never had a smoking related issue. Ban the bloody things and stop sapping off addicted people!!

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