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NYC: Smoking Spikes

Brad Lamm, CIPwoman smoking cigarette

Smoking kills, right? We all know that. Nobody’s lining up fighting for the rights of the smoker, nor the wellness smoking bestows on the smoker. We know what we know, and feel bad for those who still smoke – and wonder: WHAT MIGHT IT TAKE FOR THAT PERSON TO STOP?

Many things have contributed to the decline of smokers in the US over the past two decades and yet recently you might be surprised to know that nicotine addiction is on the rise.

Over 1 million New Yorkers are currently smoking, the highest rate we’ve seen in years, a study released Monday tells us. “Sixteen percent of adult New Yorkers smoked in 2013, up from 14 percent in 2010,” which was the lowest ratio the state ever had. This recent trend suggests something has changed and I’m going to blame it in part, on the E-Cigarettes.

The E-cigarette companies use candy-like flavors geared to attracting youth. According to the CDC, “over 263,000 teenagers who’ve never smoked a regular cigarette now use e-cigarettes.” The amount of middle school and high schoolers using it have tripled in the past three years “From 79,000 in 2011 to more than a quarter million in 2013.” The increased vaping use among children for some has been a gateway to nicotine and other substance addictions.

Mayor Bloomberg started the battle in 2012 to get the smoking numbers down. He banned smoking in public places such as parks and restaurants. This was a blueprint eventually used all over the country. There were several intense campaigns depicting painful images of the health detriments from smoking to scare people into quitting. He also put higher taxes on tobacco products in New York than anywhere else in the country. This plan had great success.

From a public health standpoint, what went wrong? Commissioner of the Department of Health Dr. Mary Basset chimes in, “city budget cutbacks caused by the economic downturn of the last six years is the largest culprit” behind the increased smoking numbers resurfacing. They took the foot off the gas, and now smoking is back with a vengeance.

Nicotine, like any addictive drug can leave you feeling powerless. It can also be a gateway to other addictive drugs. Nicotine addicts more human beings on the planet than ANY OTHER. Help is out there, all you have to do is seek it.

If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, call the Breathe Life Healing Centers’ HelpLines today and get our professional feedback for guidance and support. We don’t treat tobacco addiction but we can certainly point you in the right direction with ways to quit. We do treat all mind-altering substance addictions.

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