One puff, two puffs, three puffs, four…five puffs, six puffs, seven puffs, more…
Are you a smoker, non-smoker, or maybe something in between…is it really possible to be a “social smoker”?
Well, to answer that question, I think we should start by taking some time to define what a social smoker actually is.
What the Ninja’s and the MD’s have to say….
Our team have found that, smoking less than once a day is a common trait among the social smoker. When these people do feel like a drag, they tend to smoke several cigarettes in a single night, and that may be why they usually won’t want another one for days or even weeks after.
If people are smoking so infrequently, you may be wondering, why do they bother with smoking casually at all? Well, it seems that the majority of social smokers don’t realize that even the occasional cigarette can be hazardous to one’s health, and many people who are around a group of smokers – whether in a club, at a bar, or on the subway – may find it easier to cope in these social situations if they’re also smoking themselves.
Dr Elizabeth Lloyd-Richardson, is an assistant professor of psychiatry and health behavior with Brown University in Rhode Island. The professor, states that it’s common for smokers to try and use the social smoking strategy to keep from becoming addicted; but goes on to say that in actual fact, most already are. She’s found that many people with the social smoker’s mentality often believe that they can smoke a few cigarettes here and there, and simply bag the habit later on down the road… but this is often not the case. Most of these smokers wind up smoking for many more years to come, and some never quit at all.
Regardless of your individual opinion of smoking traditional cigarettes, the fact is that people do it, because people enjoy it, and it’s well within their right. Society knows this and that’s why psychiatrists across the globe encourage smokers to try and smoke a little instead of a lot. Real social smokers run less risk of becoming dependent on nicotine and are likely to find it much easier to quit smoking altogether. Here are a couple of statistics to give you a better look at who these people are:
Social Smoker Statistics
·At least 85-90% of smokers must smoke every day or they will begin to suffer the side effects of withdrawal.
·In comparison, only about 10% to 15% of people who are alcohol drinkers become dependent, and this makes nicotine the most addictive of substances.
·About 1/4 of smokers only have a few cigarettes a day or only smoke every once in awhile.
·There are 45 million smokers in the United States, and about 19% of them do not smoke every single day.
So, yes, ladies and gentlemen it is very possible to be a social smoker. The next inquiry that should be tackled, however, falls within the boundaries of:
Is it reasonable to be a social smoker?
The thing about smoking, whether social or not, is that one cigarette almost always leads to another. Cigarettes are known to be more addictive than what people might consider ‘more hardcore class-A substances.
Social E-cigarette: geared towards social smokers that need a fix without leaving their drink.
Dependency is different for everyone.
Like many people on the verge of addiction, most social smokers deny that they may have a dependency; no matter how small it may be. That’s why it’s important to be aware of your smoking patterns and preferences, or you may find your “social” smoking self going to bars more and more frequently just to satisfy the claim that your smoking is in fact social.
Another thing to consider is that, just because the social smoker does not smoke regularly, this doesn’t mean that they’re not suffering a nicotine addiction. Social smokers may turn to the patch, pipes, chewing tobacco, and even nicotine laced gum products to satiate their cravings. While, these extremely low levels of “smoking” may not seem to cause much harm, it’s important to realize that any habit, when unchecked, can be very bad for your health.
What can you do to avoid social smoking?
To be entirely frank, if you are looking to avoid, or get out of the habit of social smoking, it may be a good idea to pass on situations that might put you in the position to smoke socially. If this is, however, absolutely unavoidable, many people turn to chewing normal gum, updating their social circles to include some non-smokers, and preoccupying themselves when they notice all the smokers moving outside for their regular cigarette breaks.
Keep in mind that if you only need to smoke in social situations, and you really aren’t addicted to smoking or nicotine, then it should be all the more easy to quit altogether. You may also find that someone else you know is living the same struggle, and in that case teaming up with a buddy may be very helpful in quitting harmful tobacco products for good.
But here’s the thing….
Are you a social smoker and comfortable with it?
We’ve already established that it is possible to be a social smoker, and to be totally at ease with the fact that you are, too.