Smoking can harm your sexual health

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Consumer Healthcare today released survey findings that decisively refute the myth that smokers are "sexy." In fact, in a national survey of 784 adults aged 18-44, an overwhelming majority of respondents - 87% - disagreed with the sentiment that smoking is sexy. Adding insult to injury, among all adults, almost one quarter (24%) have actually turned down sex because the potential partner was a smoker.

The April Fool's survey also shows that most people find smoking a drag when considering a romantic partner, with more than three-quarters of adults preferring to date non-smokers. And the finding is not limited to those who don't light up themselves, as even 76% of smokers admit that the habit isn't sexy. "There's no doubt that quitting smoking has immediate health benefits. But if people need an additional incentive to quit above and beyond their overall health, perhaps this unexpected advantage to their personal lives is it. We want to be there to help smokers quit regardless of their reason for trying," said Bill Slivka, Vice President, Smoking Control, GSK Consumer Healthcare.

The survey, while lighthearted on its face, is bolstered by several studies that reveal the very serious effect smoking can have on sexual performance in men. Smoking restricts bloodflow and can impact the quality of sexual response. In one study, smokers as young as 31-49 were 50% more likely than nonsmokers to report and suffer from erectile dysfunction. This very real problem is nearly unknown to smokers, as only 28% of those surveyed agree that smoking can cause this side effect.

Fortunately, quitting smoking can improve erectile dysfunction, and new data show that even the heaviest smokers benefit from using medical nicotine to quit. "Many heavily addicted smokers believe nothing can help them, but we now know that these smokers are among the most successful in quitting using medicinal nicotine," said Slivka. "We hope that the added bonus to their sexual health is the push they need to quit."

GSK Consumer Healthcare has a long history in developing innovative smoking cessation products, and currently markets the broadest range of non- prescription, FDA-approved quit methods, including NicoDerm CQ patch, Nicorette gum, and Commit lozenge. To date, GSK Consumer Healthcare's stop-smoking products have helped more than 2 million Americans stop smoking by providing lower, safe doses of nicotine to ease withdrawal from cigarettes. GSK Consumer Healthcare's medicinal nicotine products are clinically proven to help smokers safely manage the symptoms of nicotine dependence and withdrawal so they can quit successfully. These products help smokers quit without exposing them to the more than 4,000 chemicals and at least 69 known or suspected carcinogens found in tobacco smoke. Smokers can choose which medicinal nicotine product to use based upon their preferences and individual smoking habits, including how much they smoke. Further, smokers can choose a GSK Consumer Healthcare medication confident in the knowledge that these products have been tested in over 100 controlled clinical trials involving over 35,000 participants and found to be safe and effective in helping smokers quit.

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