March 29, 2013

Anti-smoking ads include Natives

Anti-smoking ads include American Indians, Alaska NativesThe Be Tobacco Free campaign has released a new set of videos that are aimed at reducing smoking among American Indians and Alaska Natives.

One ad features Nathan, a 54-year-old member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. He said secondhand smoking caused him asthma attacks, infections and lung damage.

"When you smoke, it affects more than just your health," Nathan says.
Another ad features Michael, a 57-year-old Tlingit veteran from Alaska. His smoking habit left him with Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a lung disease.

“If your doctor gives you five years to live, spend it talking with your grandchildren," Michael says. "Explain to them that your grandpa is not going to be around anymore to share his wisdom and his love. I haven’t figured out how to do that yet, and I’m running out of time.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Indians and Alaska Natives report the highest rates of smoking. This included youth and women who are pregnant.
Comment:  For more on Native health initiatives, see Gaming Improves Indians' Health and "Let's Move! in Indian Country."

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