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Nicotine is the addictive drug in tobacco smoke that causes smokers to continue to smoke. Addicted smokers need enough nicotine over a day to ‘feel normal’ – to satisfy cravings or control their mood. How much nicotine a smoker needs determines how much smoke they are likely to inhale, no matter what type of cigarette they smoke.
Along with nicotine, smokers inhale about 7,000 other chemicals in cigarette smoke. Many of these chemicals come from burning tobacco leaf. Some of these compounds are chemically active and trigger profound and damaging changes in the body.
The Better Health Channel has many topics in the section Smoking and tobacco including effects on your body, Reasons to stop smoking, statistics and financial costs.
Giving up smoking
If you have become a smoker, you are probably aware of how hard it is to give up. Don't give up hope though, because it can be done. After all, think of the alternative… continuing to smoke!
The good news is that, if smokers quit smoking, the body repairs itself quite quickly.
On the Cancer Council SA website is a section
What does the law say?
Depending on where you live there are different laws about smoking. You need to check the law where you live.
In South Australia
- It is illegal for retailers to sell tobacco products to anyone who is under 18 years of age.
- Cigarette advertising is banned in all forms of the media, and most sporting events (including team sponsorship)
- The display of tobacco products is prohibited in retail outlets. Tobacco products must not be visible from anywhere inside or outside a retail outlet.
- The law also requires that Health Warnings and graphic images appear on the packaging of all tobacco products, and states the size of the warnings and what information they have to include, and cigarettes must not be advertised at places where they are sold.
- Smoking has been banned in most workplaces, and in public places such as shopping malls, and cinemas. It is increasingly being banned in more places.
- In South Australia it is illegal to smoke in a car with children as passengers.
- Cigarette vending machines have also been banned everywhere except hotels and other licensed venues.
- Smoking is banned within 10 metres of children's public playground equipment.
- Smoking is banned under covered public transport waiting areas, including bus, tram, train and taxi shelters and other areas used to board or alight from public transport that are covered by a roof.
- Local councils and other incorporated bodies can apply to have an outdoor area or event declared smoke-free.
- The age that a person can be fined for smoking-related offences has been reduced to 15 years.
Information in languages other than English
Information in many languages is on the QUITnow site.
The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor or other health professional.