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Monday, February 3, 2014

Smoking Became Bad 50 Years Ago

Luther Terry
Luther Terry (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
On January 11th, 1964, just over fifty years ago, the U.S. Surgeon General, Luther Terry, issued the first government report that tied smoking to disease and death. More than 42% of U.S. adults smoked, and your doctor was probably one of them.

It was the spark that, over the last five decades, became the fire that is the anti-tobacco campaigns that we see today. It brought about regulations that are still progressing to this day, and the adult smoking rate has been cut by more than half.

The “quitting smoking” campaigns have come a long way since the days of doctors advocating different brands of cigarettes. Now, a smoker cannot go to a doctor without being encouraged to quit. Tobacco is highly addictive and can be deadly, being one of the leading causes of COPD, cancer, and heart disease.

Today, despite there being a number of products and medications to assist in quitting, it can still prove challenging and relapse rates are high, but it can be done. Many have used 12-step modeled programs to achieve the goal of quitting smoking.

Over the last fifty years we have seen:
  • 1964: U.S. surgeon general report concludes smoking causes lung cancer.
  • 1965: Warning labels required on cigarette packs.
  • 1971: TV and radio commercials for cigarettes banned.
  • 1972: Airlines told to provide no-smoking sections.
  • 1987: Aspen, Colo., becomes first U.S. city to ban smoking in restaurants.
  • 1988: Smoking banned on short domestic airline flights.
  • 1998: Forty-six states reach $206 billion settlement with cigarette makers.
  • 2000: Smoking prohibited on international flights.
  • 2009: Food and Drug Administration authorized to regulate tobacco products.
Please take a minute to watch the short video below: 

If you are having trouble viewing the video, you can see it here.
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