cigarette-666941_640A new study proves that tobacco smoke harms human DNA and is linked to a whole range of cancers. This was a large-scale research exercise involving 5,000 smokers so it can’t be dismissed.

Though I don’t specialise in smoking cessation myself, it is something I feel is very worthwhile and other hypnotherapists report good results as long as their clients are really motivated to stop.

One reason that I don’t offer smoking cessation is that I have a personal interest that makes it hard for me to be objective. In her youth and middle age, my mother had been a very heavy smoker. When she was in her last months of life, I watched her trying desperately to breathe, hooked up to an oxygen cylinder. This is an image that will stay with me always. She had suffered from breathing problems for years and her whole retirement (after a life of hard work and little enjoyment) had been blighted by this disability. I had health problems myself that later were recognised as the result of passive smoking.

I do offer help for clients who want to rid themselves of unwanted habits and lead healthier lives. Some of these issues – such as obesity or excessive drinking – have a negative effect on their families and friends. But only smoking harms such a wide range of people, including the general public who are breathing in the harmful ‘second-hand’ smoke. Does passive smoking also harm DNA? It would seem likely.

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