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Why Is the Use of Tobacco Increasing?

Why Is the Use of Tobacco Increasing?

By Dr. Jean Eljay, PhD, MS, CMT, AdvHC, CHt, NLP

If Smoking Is Hazardous to Personal Health, Why Is the Use of Tobacco in its Various Forms Increasing? With Increasing Incidence of Unhealthy Behaviors During and Post-Pandemic - stress is skyrocketing and anxiety and depression are reaching all time high levels. As a result, the increasing incidence of tobacco use (in all its forms) is not surprising. Pandemic levels of anxiety and depression are approaching 1 in 3 adults. This is causing increasing levels of tension, worries and concerns in almost every household. Cabin fever adds to this already increasing mental health load. Bad habits have clearly become routine during this time of uncertainty and change. This uncertainty and rapid change cause more pressure on everyone from school children to working adults. Perhaps uncertainty of this pandemic hits the elderly population the most.

How Do Unhealthy Habits Begin and Why Do They Remain? - The Surgeon General says that smoking is an addiction enhanced by the nicotine levels in smoke. However, like other harmful habits, smoking can be stopped through the judicious use of the healing arts. This is accomplished easily and naturally. While smoking may have begun driven by emotions e.g. loneliness, social anxiety, etc.; over time it may become fixed as an unhealthy habit. Indeed, the initial event and the reasons for starting may have faded overtime. The bottom line is that those emotions that initially drove the desire to smoke may no longer be remembered and have little influence at the present time. However, what is remembered is the repetition of the practice of smoking. While it may have originated for social reasons or for appearances, it is now more linked to common triggers. These triggers might include drinking coffee, driving the car, sitting in a bar, taking a break at work, or plain finding comfort, etc. When an action is repeated over and over, it becomes second nature. Indeed, the psychiatrist Milton Erickson, MD felt that unhealthy behaviors became cemented in by repetition. The concept of “standing in your own way” has its origins and its solution linked to this basic formula. Healing, therefore, was related to undoing the damage fostered by repetition and habit. In the United States, he pioneered the use of clinical hypnosis in disease and unhealthy behaviors. His legacy of intervention persists today.

Unhealthy Habits Remain and Are Being Reinforced by the Pandemic. – Following Erickson’s legacy, the healing arts were documented to work well for programming smoking cessation. Habit is defined as a routine, ritual, or repeated performance of a specific set of actions. These habits are initiated on a regular basis and occur mostly subconsciously. His therapeutic approach allows the subconscious to unravel, untwist, and undo long standing habits. However, undoing something so well established is a difficult chore. Evidence supports that eliminating unhealthy habits may be very difficult (hence the yo-yo effect). Practitioners of the healing arts showed that substitution of an unhealthy habit for a healthy one works well. As we discussed in last month’s article entitled, “Stop Smoking for a Healthier Pregnancy with Hypnosis” in September’s issue of Natural Awakenings, both smoking and secondary smoke are well documented to cause severe effects on health. Indeed, it has recently been shown by R. Patanavanich and SA Glantz that smoking is a risk factor for progression of COVID-19. They documented that smokers have an higher odds of COVID-19 progression than non-smokers. Smoking also affects social acceptance and appearance as smokers develop yellowed teeth and fingers, bad breath, odors, pale or uneven skin tone, drooping skin and a much older appearance. Ironically, overtime, smoking goes from being “cool” to “looking old”.

As a smoker, the best way to regain health and vitality is to stop smoking (see Figure 1 from the CDC). The best time to stop is now (see Figure 2 from the University of Chicago Medicine). There are many ways to stop smoking, but cognitive behavioral hypnosis and neurolinguistic programming rank as a prime method for longevity of results and positive response. This approach is drug free. This eliminates the possibility of serious and severe drug-induced complications, drug interactions and drug negative side effects. Another long-term benefit is the direct abibeneficial and healthy thing that can be accomplished easily and naturally (no matter how many times that it has been attempted) is to stop smoking, NOW!

For more information or to schedule an appointment contact Dr. Jean Eljay’s office 484.574.1144 or email Dr. Jean @ to deal with nicotine-induced withdrawal and subsequent weight gain. Overall, the most



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