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Rebecca’s Story

Rebecca, age 57, started smoking cigarettes at age 16. All of her family members smoked, and once she started smoking, she was hooked. Rebecca kept smoking into adulthood and tried to stop but soon discovered she had trouble quitting.

At age 33, Rebecca was diagnosed with depression. She smoked frequently when she felt depressed because she thought smoking might help her cope with her feelings. Rebecca felt ashamed when she smoked, so when she tried to quit and couldn’t, she felt even more depressed. “That was just a vicious, vicious cycle,” she said. To break the cycle, Rebecca knew she had to get care for her depression and quit smoking for good.

Rebecca also lost some teeth as a result of gum disease, which can be caused by smoking. This further strengthened her resolve to lead a healthy lifestyle. Rebecca finally quit smoking, and she feels better—both mentally and physically. Rebecca is proud of her accomplishment. “It’s about taking control and knowing where you want to be in your life.”

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Rebecca's Tip

Rebecca started smoking at age 16.  At age 33, she was diagnosed with depression. As a smoker for many years, Rebecca turned to cigarettes to help her cope. When she tried to quit and couldn’t, she felt even more depressed and started smoking again. “That was just a vicious, vicious cycle,” she said. In this ad from CDC's Tips From Former Smokers campaign, Rebecca talks about how quitting made her feel better – mentally and physically.

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