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Youth Nicotine Dependency Test

WARNING: Smoking, vaping, chewing or dipping nicotine is extremely addictive. It may only take once or twice to keep you coming back for life. Once hooked, statistics show that there is a substantial likelihood that you will smoke yourself to death.

Rachel is an 18 year-old College of Charleston student whose message to children and teens is that she's hooked on smoking nicotine.

If you're free stay clean but if you HONC seek help immediately!

Nicotine Addiction's 10 Warning Signs

HONC - Hooked On Nicotine Checklist

Have you ever tried to quit but couldn't?
Do you smoke now because it is really hard to quit?
Have you ever felt like you were addicted to tobacco?
Do you ever have strong cravings to smoke?
Have you ever felt like you really needed a cigarette?
Is it hard to keep from smoking in places where you are not supposed to, like school?

In answering the last four questions, when you tried to stop
smoking, or when you have not used tobacco for a while ...

Did you find it hard to concentrate?
Did you feel more irritable?
Did you feel a strong need or urge to smoke?
Did you feel nervous, restless or anxious because you couldn't smoke?

Answering " yes " to any one of the above ten questions indicates that you may already be hooked on nicotine and are chemically dependent.  Your "yes" answer is your own honest self assessment that you have already lost the freedom and ability to simply and effortlessly walk away.  Two-thirds of all teens who you see smoking regularily will spend their entire life as slaves to nicotine.  If you HONC we'll help - WhyQuit.com

Source: HONC - (Hooked on Nicotine Checklist), Tobacco Control, Sept. 2002
Created by www.WhyQuit.com - Join us for motivation, education and support!

Will just one cigarette forever change your life?

The world is slowly awaking to the realization that nicotine has always and forever been the wizard behind the curtain, the heartless master of youth enslavement, and the executioner of millions each year who became hooked while teenagers. Tobacco is simply the curtain that nicotine hid behind, dependency's dirty drug delivery device, and a destructive means of overkill for ensuring decay, disease and death on a massive scale. 

Although highly intoxicating drugs create immediate and dangerous risks (including overdose and death from impaired judgment), the world's youth are entitled to an honest assessment of each drugs differing abilities to permanently enslave the human mind. Intoxication levels and rates of addiction are two different issues. In truth, a particular drug's level of intoxication (the "high" produced) has very little relationship to its ability to chemically addict users. If 100 teens each become regular users of alcohol, powdered cocaine, and nicotine, roughly 10 teens will become addicted to alcohol (becoming lifetime alcoholics), 10 to 15 will become permanently dependent upon powdered cocaine (see PDF page 262), and from 70 to90 (depending upon how chemical dependency is defined) will become nicotine's permanent slaves.

Once established, chemical dependency is a permanent condition. Even if you do quit and successfully navigate withdrawal and recovery you'll remain on probation for life, always just one puff away from full and complete relapse back to your old level of nicotine use or higher. Think in terms of the recovered alcoholic taking one little sip and falling completely off the wagon. Just one puff of new nicotine and complete relapse is all but assured.

Not only does nicotine addict at least five times more users than cocaine, as a 2008 HONC study found -- and as many of us had long known -- it may only take smoking nicotine one or two times before it begins taking control of your brain's dopamine reward pathways.

It took just five cigarettes over a three day period before my brain began expecting more nicotine. I was all alone in my room with no one around to impress when my brain began asking for more. Until reading the HONC study I thought that my rate of enslavement was unusually fast. I was wrong. If the HONC study is correct, each year thousands and thousands of teens are hooked after only a few cigarettes or a few days of smoking nicotine.

Nicotine's half-life in the human body has always been about two hours. It's the basic fact that fuels the endless need for that next nico-fix. But new nicotine delivery devices threaten a whole new generation of youth with a loss of freedom, autonomy and a lifetime need to feed constantly falling blood serum nicotine levels. Flavored nicotine lozenges, 27 flavors of nicotine suckers, flavored nicotine gum, nicotine straws, e-cigs, nicotine water, inhalers, sprays, drops, pills, and worthless patches are now supplementing cigarettes, cigars, pipes, dip, snuff and chew. Captured by fashion and promise, they'll soon find themselves HONCing and will be forced to feed upon the cheapest nicotine available - the dirtiest drug delivery device of all - burning tobacco.

Human greed has manipulated science and understanding while creating a quagmire of conflict through which the world's youth are expected to wade. Is nicotine "medicine" or one of earth's most addictive chemicals? Is its use really "therapy" or does nicotine actually create chronic depression, kill brain cells, clog the body's blood vessels, and cause lung cancer all by itself?  Does smoking within five years of a teen girl having her very first period cause her to have a 70% greater chance of developing breast cancer? Will it make you temporarily feel good or will it make a permanent slave of the brain's feel good circuitry? Is it the answer to those few unwanted pounds or a way to potentially deprive all your pounds of years and years of life

If you're a teen and find yourself hooked and HONCing then don't feel alone.  Nearly 9 out of 10 adult smokers were lured into nicotine's trap while teens too.  All those pretty colored cigarette packs and boxes at the store and nicotine smokers outside of every building, over one billion of us were enticed into thinking we were missing something good. Thousands of slick tobacco company ads in your favorite magazines were all designed to brainwash you into believe that smoking is an adult "free choice" issue for the good looking and spirited of heart, and that you are missing out.

If you are already HONCing then, like me, you were been suckered! They made us want to be like the models in the ads and to feel grown up.  They baited our hooks by catering to our spirit of youthful rebellion, our desire to look more adult, to fit in, to be accepted, or to live yet another adult "free choice" experience.  If you HONCed then you now known that the "free choice" image painted by tobacco companies was a big big lie.

The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) says that roughly 70% of the adult smokers you see each day are dying to be free, but (wrongly) feel they're hooked too deeply to pull it off.  Once chemically addicted to nicotine there are only two choices - feed an endless cycle of need for more nicotine, or endure a temporary period of chemical withdrawal and psychological recovery.

In societies in which 20%, 30%, 40%, or more than 50% of adults are chemically dependent upon nicotine, where nicotine is being handed out as medicine, candy, a thirst quencher, and diet supplements, how difficult will it be for youth to find the truth? The links on this page and WhyQuit.com are dedicated to sharing the rest of the story. Together we can make a difference. Just one day at a time, NEVER TAKE ANOTHER PUFF!

Breathe deep, hug hard, live long!

John R. Polito, Cessation Educator

How nicotine enslaves the mind

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What's happening and where it leads

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Where nicotine leads half of all hooked smokers - meet Noni

icon for linking to freedom

A check-list to help you break free and stay clean

Please print and share the HONC checklist with students at your school.

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© WhyQuit.Com 2014 - Page created 08/29/02 and last updated 07/25/18 by John R. Polito