Date: 1935
Brand: Lucky Strike
Manufacturer: American Tobacco Company
Campaign: Dentist Recommends
Theme: Doctors Smoking
Keywords: Male, Female, Dentist, Mild, Throat, Irritation
Quote: To anxiety... I bring relief, I'm your best friend, I am your Lucky Strike.

Comment: A man sits nervously in the waiting room of a dentist s office, awaiting his examination. A beautiful woman sitting beside him offers him a cigarette to relieve his anxiety. If he can smoke them in a dentist s office, they can t be harmful to the throat or teeth, can they? Lucky drives home this message by reminding consumers that its cigarettes do not irritate your throat. Most likely, the man is nervous about his appointment because his dentist is about to give him a stern lecture as to the ill effects of smoking, which will be blatantly obvious upon initial examination of his teeth and gums.

Dentist Recommends

Along with doctors and nurses, dentists presented yet another health professional that had the potential to reassure consumers worried about the ill health effects of smoking. Whereas otolaryngologists (ear, nose, and throat doctors) could assure mildness for throats, the recommendation from a dentist might indicate fewer cosmetic mouth side effects for the advertised brands. The none-too-subtle message was that if the dentist, with all of his expertise in oral care, chose to smoke a particular brand or recommended a particular brand, then it must be safe. Dentists were seen as experts not only in suffering throats, but also in such side effects as yellowed teeth, bad breath, and oral cancer. Well-known early victims of oral cancer include Sigmund Freud (1856-1939), who developed cancer of the palate after years of smoking 20 cigars a day; U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885), who passed away from tongue cancer; and U.S. President Grover Cleveland (1837-1908), who suffered from cancer of the palate in 1893. Though President Cleveland successfully had the cancer surgically removed, he ultimately died of a heart attack 15 years later.

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