‘Smart,’ the way out of smoking, says clinician - GulfToday

‘Smart,’ the way out of smoking, says clinician

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Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.

Mariecar Jara-Puyod, Senior Reporter

 “Smart” is the way to stub the tobacco and e-cigarettes or vape, according to a clinician based in Abu Dhabi.

“Smart” stands for “picking up the best Strategy, getting Motivated, becoming more Aware, finding the personal Reasons why you want to quit and making Total commitment.”

The clinician is a certified tobacco treatment specialist for almost two decades. Dr Iyaad Hasan, the founding director of the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute-Tobacco Treatment Centre (Ohio) in 2007 and through the Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi since 2016, has been engaging UAE residents into “better health literacy and knowledge via the CCAD Community Outreach Initiative.”

Gulf Today approached him with regard to studies in the US revealing mounting severe burn injuries among e-cigarettes consumers due to overheating or malfunctioning lithium ion batteries.

Among the studies was a collation of over 2,000 cases burn injuries in a period of two years, according to the number of hospital visits.

Hasan’s colleague at Cleveland Clinic Ohio-Emergency Department, Dr Baruch Fertel was also reported as saying: “We have seen cases of people keeping (e-cigarette) in their shirt pocket, and hitting a coin, or their keys, causing a short circuit, and causing fire.”

In a related news, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi is pursuing “Know Your Heart” educational programmes throughout September since on the 29th is the “World Heart Day,” and smoking is one of the high risks to heart diseases.

On the total number of vapers who have consulted the hospital for failed or failing health, Hasan said, “We do not have precise figures. There are a number of different reasons, but the main factor is health. We have seen a very young population of health-conscious patients looking to make a positive change in their lives.”

The average age among the UAE residents is 33 vis-à-vis 52 in the US.

Reasons for the request for assistance to quit are the “fear of our patients that they will continue to become more sick if they keep smoking and family pressure.”

The 100 per cent excise tax on all tobacco products as imposed by the UAE government has increased the prices and smokers are finding it difficult to sustain the habit.

On the vape-related burn injuries in the UAE, Hasan claimed he has “yet to see such cases myself.”

“But I am very aware of many reported cases of burns from battery malfunctions as well as now reported deaths related to e-cigarettes in the US.”

Hasan proceeded by reiterating what other UAE-based medical specialists have to say about the fallacies on e-cigarettes: “Vaping is not the way to quit smoking. It is not the healthier option. E-cigarettes are promoted as being less harmful but that does not mean no harm. There is no form of tobacco or nicotine use that is safe, and should not be seen as a healthier alternative.”

He expounded on the Smart:

* Research shows that medications plus support lead to better chances of quitting smoking three times so Strategize with the assistance from experts.

* Motivation is the key to lifestyle change and better health so keep on becoming enthusiastic and more positive in life.

* Being more Aware of the number of tobacco and tobacco-related products one finishes in a day will make him “more likely to taper or quit.”

* There are Reasons to quit. “Quit for you and not for anyone else. The more personal the reason, the more likely to quit.”

* Total commitment to quit is the goal, nothing else.

On the “Know Your Heart” campaign, Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi chief executive officer Dr Rakesh Suri said, “Heart disease is a global challenge. Education is one of the most effective tools to reduce (the impact).

Helping people understand that simple changes to their daily routines can help (lead) them to healthier lifestyle (would make) enormous social difference.”

Activities are ongoing throughout Abu Dhabi.