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Were you a smoker?

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Cigarette smoking has fallen to its lowest point in recorded history, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

An estimated 14 percent of adults in the U.S., or 34.3 million people, smoked cigarettes in 2017, down from 15.5 percent in 2016, according to the CDC. This historic low represents a 67 percent decline from 1965, when the National Health Interview Survey started tracking the figure and 42.4 percent of adults smoked cigarettes.

The new data highlight how successful public health efforts have been over the past few decades. But it also shows that while concentrating on cigarettes has largely paid off, about 47 million people are still using some type of tobacco product.

 

"The declines we saw in 2017 for adult smoking are certainly unprecedented," said Brian King, a deputy director in the CDC's office on smoking and health, while cautioning against considering the data an overall public health win.

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Initiatives like raising the price of tobacco, educating consumers on the dangers of smoking and efforts to help people quit are the primary drivers behind the decline, said King. Fewer young people are starting to smoke, older smokers are dying and others are quitting, he said.

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sort of?

about a week during finals my freshman year 1st term. Everybody says...It'll help w/stress

at the end of the week I figured out this was BS

Smoke a cigar on occasion. Maybe 4 or 5 a year

WoScrapr was a smoker when we met. She probably smoked for 15 years. She quit when LilScrapr asked her to. She settled on hypnosis. Everyone once in a while I try out "trigger" words that make her cluck like a chicken

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Started when I was 13 or 14. I was working in a big resort kitchen. It wasn't a fancy place, just an old hotel on the shore of New Hamster.

I was staying in the dorm, they didn't pay enough to get an apartment for a lot of the staff. And I was bored out of my gourd. I did a lot of foolish things that summer.

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...started late, when I was driving a cab at night to stay awake.  That would have been in my early 20's.  Quit down in East TN in my early 30's when I had to sit and listen to all the black lung coal miners hacking up a piece of lung out in the waiting room of the Social Security office there.  All those guys smoked Camel or Pall Mall straights, no filter.

Smoking pot was a gateway drug to nicotine for me. :(

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I, born in 1950 began smoking in college around 1970 and by the 90's I was smoking 1 1/2 packs of "lite" cigarettes per day.  From 1980 on, I tried to quit off and on.  Like Mark Twain said, "Quitting smoking is the easiest thing. I've done it a thousand times."

I would try to quit, play a softball game on a team a bar sponsored, returned to the bar and soon was bumming smokes.  My friends smoked, my parents smoked, my siblings smoked. I couldn't get away from it.

Then, on Aug. 5, 1995, I drove from Maryland to my cousin's semi-rural property outside of Morristown, NJ, to spend a week there and show them how to install six big cardboard tubes in the ground so they'd be in the right position for a preassembled gazebo to be placed on top of them and for them to be level with each other, and to help them do it.

Both my cousin and her husband had quit smoking a couple years earlier, so there would be no constant temptation from smokers.  Also, they buy red wine, which I like, by the case, which would sooth my addictive pain.  I took with me two packs of cigarettes and put them in the glove compartment because I know there's a big mental difference between not smoking because you don't have cigarettes and choosing not to smoke.

That night, Aug, 5, I stood on their backyard deck and told them as I lit up, "This is my last cigarette. Forever.  I'm going to enjoy this as much as possible because I love smoking, but this is the end."

Over the next week, I lost my temper a couple times when the husband didn't do something as I had instructed, but he was very kind - he had gone through the same withdrawal.

After that week and about one more week at home. I was ok. No serious cravings.

A few months later my mother quit smoking (Dad had passed away with lung cancer by then), followed a month later by my sister and her husband, followed early in 1996 by my brother and his wife.

We were all skinny then.  Now we're all fat.  But, after a couple decades, our chances of getting lung cancer are 8x less than smokers.

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A very few while drinking in college. I've had quite a few cigars over the years, mostly while driving long routes. 

Never for Wo2. Her mother still smokes @ 85, despite the loss of 3/4 of her legs (PAD)

Mom was a smoker for a long time, quit a few years before breast cancer got her. 

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Just now, Road Runner said:

I grew up in a family of smokers.  Aunts, uncles, mother, father all smoked heavily. 

So yeah, I was a smoker from the time I was a baby until I left my parents house.  

My MIL smoked throughout her pregnancies I think.

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Never. My dad smoked. Hated it. Have enough issues from growing up in second-hand smoke. 

My dad finally quit similar to Mick. His Dr had a very serious conversation with him when our first daughter was born and it got his attention. He was driving 400 miles away for a get together with friends. He put a pack and his Zippo lighter under the driver’s seat but never lit up again. 

Like many country folk around here, he parked his old retired cars along the fence line. When they were getting ready to move into town, a guy came and bought all the old cars and hauled them away. That night, he realized his Zippo lighter was still under the seat of the car they hauled away!

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22 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

 

Smoking pot was a gateway drug to nicotine for me. :(

One can see teens getting into pot smoking, etc.  , given Canada's legalization now.  Yea, I know there are edible cannabis products...  Not that I care to try. My sample sachet of pot given free, is still lying around.

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When I was a kid in the 50's and early 60's, it seemed like all adults smoked.  I was used to it.  I think the only time my brother and I complained was in long car trips where my parents were both smoking and the windows were rolled up because of the cold weather.  

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I smoked all through my teen years, although only as heavily as I could afford. I economized by rolling my own. Got pretty good at doing it one handed while driving.

I quit cold turkey at age 23 after a gazillion unsuccessful attempts. Then one day, I gave away two unopened packs, and never went back. That was almost 42 years ago. 

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1 puff at age..oh 6 or so...when a family friend was visiting...not for me...nope...My grandfather (I grew up living with him) alternated between smoking or chewing...my mom had quit smoking for about 17 years but picked it up again during a stressful time in her life...

 

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When I was a teenager in Kentucky I smoked, but then they raised they price of a pack of cigarettes from 30¢ to 35¢ and I quit.

Also I did some seasonal work at a tobacco warehouse a few times hanging tobacco to dry. Horrible stuff with the tar getting all over your hands and clothing. I was thinking "I'm putting that crap into my lungs?".

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I started in college after a major car accident forced me to withdraw for a semester from school.  It should be noted I was an athlete and hated the idea of smoking.  But it honestly started at some parties before that and I just started to lean on them.  I smoked for about 4 years and quit when I was 27 or so before starting up again some 15 years later when I got divorced and started drinking again.  After another 4 years before I quit.  Now that I'm remarried and the proud owner of three heart stents, I can never smoke again. Fine by me.

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Yes I was. Started when I was about 16, and stopped a little over a year ago. I figured I gave the big tobacco companies enough of my money over 26 years.  Granted I now vape and still have to occasional cigar.

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37 minutes ago, KrAzY said:

Yes I was. Started when I was about 16, and stopped a little over a year ago. I figured I gave the big tobacco companies enough of my money over 26 years.  Granted I now vape and still have to occasional cigar.

Congrats on quitting.  I quit some 1.5 years ago (again) and oddly I find from time to time I miss it. Like just reliving those days in this thread -- I find a tug on my heart that says "Wouldn't it be nice to go out back and schmoke??".  

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Smoked like a chimney for about 10 or 12 years. Started at about 12, by 14 I was a smoker, when I quit at 24 or 5 I was up to 3 packs a day, more if I was drinking.

Quitting was a nightmare, cold sweats, nausea, mean as a snake for about 2 weeks. I doubt I would still be alive if I hadn't quit.

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For me, smoking started and continued with drinking.  Even when I quit for about 15 years, I reached for them again when I started drinking again.  It seems one chemical in my body is not enough.

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Started around the age of 14. Quit at 25 from the age of 25 to 45 I quit at least 20 times. Have not had a cigarette or cigar in 13 years. 

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4 hours ago, Dottles said:

Congrats on quitting.  I quit some 1.5 years ago (again) and oddly I find from time to time I miss it. Like just reliving those days in this thread -- I find a tug on my heart that says "Wouldn't it be nice to go out back and schmoke??".  

I know the feeling.. that's why I have not given up cigars just as of yet.. one day I will be only vaping, and then off that maybe. 

Funny thing is, I was able to be a pack a day smoker, athletic, ride a few centuries with other foum members, and able to out last many people running. Now I'm a year free of tobacco and I am lazy, just can't keep up anymore like I used too.

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3 minutes ago, KrAzY said:

I know the feeling.. that's why I have not given up cigars just as of yet.. one day I will be only vaping, and then off that maybe. 

Funny thing is, I was able to be a pack a day smoker, athletic, ride a few centuries with other foum members, and able to out last many people running. Now I'm a year free of tobacco and I am lazy, just can't keep up anymore like I used too.

Yep one of my favorite things to do was to pull off the trail for a smoke, get the dirty looks of the spandex'ers, and then pass them later down the trail.

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2 hours ago, Dottles said:

Yep one of my favorite things to do was to pull off the trail for a smoke, get the dirty looks of the spandex'ers, and then pass them later down the trail.

Ha.. you pulled off the trail.. I was riding a century in MN with GrandmaRides a few years back to raise money for cancer. I took a bad spill and had blood running down my leg. Anywho... I pulled into a rest stop with a half burnt cig hanging out of my mouth and laughed at the winded people trying to catch their breath. I filled a water bottle and hit the road again. At the next stop I was asked by one of the people how it was possible I was not winded.. told them I ate a bunch of beans before the ride and they game the the extra boost I needed.. 

One guy yelled at me about moving and riding.. I just told him to stay ahead of me then :)

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I started smoking in high school to distract from the fact I was running around with Kirby's boyfriend. Kirby would be at the library preparing for finals when Dennis would pick me up and we'd go cruising around and necking in the woods. 

Dennis smoked Kools and drove a Trans Am with the t top. 

Kirby, I'm sorry. 

Daphne

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Through high school and stayed local at a Jr College for first 2 years. During the college time I worked a 3-11 shift at the hospital, late nite (would say dead, but it was a hospital 😄) was slow and could study. There was this EKG technician, also with nothing else to do, so she ran a EKG on me. I think she really wanted me/us in a sublime position and needless to say the EKG came back abnormal. Of course the obvious joke was what she was doing to my heart and the report a creative writing exercise. Later, saw the doctor reading EKG's so asked him if was correct. He suggested I see a personal cardiologist. While simple murmur, noted would deplete O2 which explained why became so winded in track and forget basketball in highschool as up and down the court were wind sprints. Of my current activities, he told me to stop scuba diving and smoking. I did, and also didn't get involved in MJ which was just coming on the scene.

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16 hours ago, JerrySTL said:

I did some seasonal work at a tobacco warehouse a few times hanging tobacco to dry. Horrible stuff with the tar getting all over your hands and clothing.

 

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Yes.  I smoked for about 30 years and quit December 7th 1991.  I had pneumonia at the time and the doc sort of pushed the idea of quit or die.

Quitting was agony as I was a serious nicotine addict by then. I didn't bother with the patch as it seemed that substituting one form of the drug for another was not quitting.  Today I'm sensitive enough to smell smokers in the car ahead of me on the highway.

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On 1/1/2019 at 12:52 PM, KrAzY said:

Yes I was. Started when I was about 16, and stopped a little over a year ago. I figured I gave the big tobacco companies enough of my money over 26 years.  Granted I now vape and still have to occasional cigar.

How is vaping not smoking? Aren't those companies owned by big tobacco? Nicotine is nicotine, right? Or am I missing something?

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13 hours ago, dennis said:

How is vaping not smoking? Aren't those companies owned by big tobacco? Nicotine is nicotine, right? Or am I missing something?

Nicotine is nicotine, but there are a lot less other chemicals I am not consuming with a cigarette. There are 20+ known carcinogenic things found in burning a cigarette.

Not sure if it is the lesser of the two evils.

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3 minutes ago, KrAzY said:

Nicotine is nicotine, but there are a lot less other chemicals I am not consuming with a cigarette. There are 20+ known carcinogenic things found in burning a cigarette.

Not sure if it is the lesser of the two evils.

Right.  But at least with vaping, the outcome is still unknown and in 'theory' seems preferable to outright smoking. If I were still addicted to nicotine (is there ever a time we truly become free of it?) then I'd definitely be vaping.  Still not as fun as drawing from a ciggy though.  The butts flick nicely into oncoming traffic too.

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2 hours ago, Dottles said:

Right.  But at least with vaping, the outcome is still unknown and in 'theory' seems preferable to outright smoking. If I were still addicted to nicotine (is there ever a time we truly become free of it?) then I'd definitely be vaping.  Still not as fun as drawing from a ciggy though.  The butts flick nicely into oncoming traffic too.

I never got I to the butt flick in traffic. I ride a motorcycle so my pure joy is knocking off someone's mirror :)

 

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