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Two-year-old boy has quit smoking

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A two-year-old boy in Indonesia, who used to smoke 40 cigarettes a day, has quit smoking after entering rehab. Child protection officials sent Aldi Rizal for therapy and, after three months of treatment, he has kicked the habit. He is now playing normally for the first time. The rehab left Aldi confused. He cried after finishing his last cigarette and then beat his head on walls, The Sun reported yesterday.

He had already started showing health complications with his heart developing a thicker lining. He often had a vacant or listless look. Aldi started smoking at 11 months when his fishmonger father gave him a cigarette. The boy's parents, of Sekayu, Indonesia, sought help as they couldn't afford his two packets a day habit. "The money can now go on other things," his mother was quoted as saying. IANS

News published in www.srikumar.com in May 2010

Ardi, an Indonesian 2 year old boy smokes 40 cigarettes per day. He is rarely seen without a cigarette, insists on the same brand, costing 3.78 (about 5.50 U.S. dollars) a day.

BEIJING, -- Taking a deep drag on his cigarette while resting on the steering wheel of his truck, he looks like a parody of a middle-aged lorry driver.

But the image covers up a much more disturbing truth: At just the tender age of two, Ardi Rizal's health has been so ruined by his 40-a-day habit that he now struggles to move by himself.

The four-stone Indonesia toddler is certainly far too unfit to run around with other children - and his condition is set to rapidly deteriorate.

His mother, Diana, 26, wept: "He's totally addicted. If he doesn't get cigarettes, he gets angry and screams and batters his head against the wall. He tells me he feels dizzy and sick." But, despite local officials' offer to buy the Rizal family a new car if the boy quits, his parents feel unable to stop him because he throws massive tantrums if they don't indulge him.

Ardi will smoke only one brand and his habit costs his parents 3.78 British pounds (about 5.50 U.S. dollars) a day in Musi Banyuasin, in Indonesia's South Sumatra province. But in spite of this, his fishmonger father Mohammed, 30, said: "He looks pretty healthy to me. I don't see the problem."

Ardi's youth is the extreme of a disturbing trend. Data from the Central Statistics Agency showed 25 per cent of Indonesian children aged three to 15 have tried cigarettes, with 3.2 per cent of those active smokers.

The percentage of five to nine year olds lighting up increased from 0.4 per cent in 2001 to 2.8 per cent in 2004, the agency reported.

 
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