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Dr. Steve Frisch, Psy.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in
Chicago, Illinois and Northfield, Illinois.

You can contact Dr. Frisch, Psy.D. at drfrisch@aliveandwellnews.com  or at
(847) 604-3290.

Recover from chemical dependency as well as its toxic impact on family members. Raise your children to choose to be alcohol and other drugs free. Learn how to in Dr. Frisch’s, Psy.D. Recovery book series.

Facts About…
Cigarette Smoking

Cigarette smoking is perhaps the most devastating preventable cause of disease and premature death. Cigarettes are also referred to as Smokes, Cigs, or Butts. Smokeless Tobacco is also referred to as Chew, Dip, Spit Tobacco, or Snuff.

Smoking is particularly dangerous for teens because their bodies are still developing and changing and the 4,000 chemicals (including 200 known poisons) in cigarette smoke can adversely affect this process.

Cigarettes are highly addictive. One-third of young people who are just "experimenting" end up being addicted by the time they are 20.

Although many people smoke because they believe cigarettes calm their nerves, smoking releases epinephrine, a hormone which creates physiological stress in the smoker, rather than relaxation. The use of tobacco is addictive. Most users develop tolerance for nicotine and need greater amounts to produce a desired effect. Smokers become physically and psychologically dependent and will suffer withdrawal symptoms including: changes in body temperature, heart rate, digestion, muscle tone, and appetite. Psychological symptoms include: irritability, anxiety, sleep disturbances, nervousness, headaches, fatigue, nausea, and cravings for tobacco that can last days, weeks, months, years, or an entire lifetime.

Smoking is the most common cause of lung cancer. Smoking is also a leading cause of cancer of the mouth, throat, bladder, pancreas, and kidney. Smokeless tobacco can cause mouth cancer, tooth loss, and other health problems.

Smoking is particularly harmful for teens because your body is still growing and changing. The 200 known poisons in cigarette smoke affect your normal development and can cause life-threatening diseases, such as chronic bronchitis, heart disease, and stroke.

Cigarettes contain nicotine-a powerfully addictive substance. Three-quarters of young people who use tobacco daily continue to do so because they find it hard to quit.

Tobacco can kill you. Smoking is the leading preventable cause of death in this country. More than 400,000 Americans die from tobacco-related causes each year, and most of them began using tobacco before the age of 18.

Pathfinder’s Checklist
Risks associated with tobacco consumption.

1.) Diminished or extinguished sense of smell and taste
2.) Frequent colds
3.) Smoker's cough
4.) Gastric ulcers
5.) Chronic bronchitis
6.) Increase in heart rate and blood pressure
7.) Premature and more abundant face wrinkles
8.) Emphysema
9.) Heart disease
10.) Stroke
11.) Cancer of the mouth, larynx, pharynx, esophagus, lungs, pancreas, cervix, uterus, and bladder

Pathfinder’s Checklist
How tobacco affects you.

1.) Tobacco damages your health.
2.) Tobacco affects your body's development.
3.) Tobacco is addictive.

Pathfinder’s Checklist
What you should know about tobacco.

1.) Know the law—It is illegal for anyone under 18 to buy cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, or tobacco-related products.
2.) Stay Informed—Addiction to tobacco is hard to control. More than 90 percent of teens who use tobacco daily experience at least one symptom of withdrawal when they try to quit.
3.) Keep your edge—The poisons in cigarettes can affect your appearance. Smoking can dry your skin out and cause wrinkles. Some research even relates smoking to premature gray hair and hair loss.
4.) Be aware—It can be hard to play sports if you use tobacco. Smoking causes shortness of breath and dizziness, and chewing tobacco causes dehydration.
5.) Think of others—Smoking puts the health of your friends and family at risk. Approximately 3,000 nonsmokers die of lung cancer each year from breathing other peoples’ smoke.
6.) Get the facts—Each day more than 3,000 people under age 18 become regular smokers. That's more than 1 million teens per year. Roughly one-third of them will eventually die from a tobacco-related disease.

7.) Look around you— Even though a lot of teens use tobacco, most don't. According to a 1998 study, less than 20 percent of teens are regular smokers. In fact, 64 percent of 12- to 17-year-olds have never even tried a cigarette.

Pathfinder’s Checklist
How to tell if a friend or loved one is using tobacco.

1.) Wheezing
2.) Coughing
3.) Bad breath
4.) Smelly hair and clothes
5.) Yellow-stained teeth and fingers
6.) Frequent colds
7.) Decreased senses of smell and taste
8.) Difficulty keeping up with sports and athletic activities
9.) Bleeding gums (smokeless tobacco)
10.) Frequent mouth sores (smokeless tobacco)

Frequently Asked Questions About Tobacco

Q. Doesn't smoking help you relax?
A. No. Smoking can actually increase feelings of stress and nervousness. Break the cycle: Use drug-free strategies to calm your nerves like exercise and talking to your friends.

Q. Isn't smokeless tobacco safer to use than cigarettes?
A. No. There is no safe form of tobacco. Smokeless tobacco can cause mouth, cheek, throat, and stomach cancer. Smokeless tobacco users are 50 times more likely to get oral cancer than non-users. Those smokeless tobacco users who don't develop some type of cancer are still likely to have signs of use, like stained teeth, bad breath, and mouth sores.

Q. Isn't smoking sexy?
A. Only if you think bad breath, smelly hair, yellow fingers, and coughing are sexy. Advertisements often portray smoking as glamorous and sophisticated, but think carefully about who created these ads and why.



Recover from chemical dependency as well as its toxic impact on family members. Raise your children to choose to be alcohol and other drugs free. Learn how to in Dr. Frisch’s, Psy.D. Recovery book series—From Insanity to Serenity.

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