KTVU Morning Show Interview with Author Paul Brunetta

As more people use e-cigarettes and the FDA has increased the tobacco purchasing age nationwide to 21, Dr. Paul Brunetta from UCSF talked to Mornings on 2 about ways people can quit smoking in the new year. Scroll down to read interview highlights.

Interview Highlights

Frank Mallicoat (KTVU News anchor): My parents smoke. My brother smokes. They had cancer issues, but yet still smokes. Talk about the addiction of smoking.

Paul Brunetta: Nicotine is immensely addictive. It’s one of the most addictive substances known. It’s right up there with heroin and cocaine. When people use nicotine regularly, it actually changes your brain chemistry. When you don’t get access to it, you can feel anxious, depressed, angry. You could have mood swings. There to relieve that, which is another cigarette. This is what happens typically in teenagers when the brain is forming and that can cause lifetime problems. It’s one of the most addictive substances known. The epidemic of e-cigarette use now is just a public health disaster.

Frank: I hate cigarettes. None of my friends smoke, but a new generation is getting hooked on this [through vaping]. Here we go again, right?

Paul: Twenty-five percent of all high school seniors in the US now report e-cigarette use within the past thirty days. That number has been going up and up and up. We’re not seeing a peak. That’s five million young people. Again, nicotine is intensely addicted. Many of them don’t know that these e-cigarettes and vaping mods have nicotine.

Frank: Aside from getting your book, what advice do you have for people who want to quit smoking in the new year?

Paul: Be kind to yourself. This is a stressful season and a difficult season to quit. But, it is a great time of year to get new resources and to make an attempt. Don’t stop trying. There are many things you can learn and you can be successful. … Keep trying and and don’t stop trying. It’s really most important thing you’ll ever do for your health.

Frank: How many times did you try to quit?

Paul: At least a dozen. (Read Paul’s account of how he finally quit for good in Learning to Quit.)

(Full transcript of KTVU interview available here)

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