Smokeout offers chance to stop

Cody PriceNov 18, 2016

While it is ultimately up to the individual if they would like to smoke, November 17 is a day aimed at informing smokers of the health benefits of quitting along with providing advice on how.

The American Cancer Society's 2017 Great American Smokeout, when smokers are encouraged to go tobacco-free for 24 hours, is Thursday.

Smoking cigarettes is the leading cause of preventable diseases in the United States of America - thankfully, more and more American smokers are quitting the harmful habit every year. Events and initiatives throughout the week will aim to drive public awareness of the importance of smoking cessation (or quitting).

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The Frederick County Health Department offers free smoking cessation services, which include individual counseling sessions or weekly group classes. However, the fight is not over since 1 in 5 adults still use tobacco. We work to help Louisiana's smokers who started smoking cigarettes prior to September 1, 1988 to stop - for free.

The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, funded by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust, or TSET, provides FREE services to help tobacco users quit their own way. Great American Smokeout participants are encouraged to use the hashtag #GASO. "It's an opportunity to discover what tools are available to help them quit and stay quit while drawing attention to preventing the deaths and chronic diseases caused by smoking".

"It can be hard to quit smoking, but a person's chances of success dramatically increase if they have the resources and support structure they need", said Secretary Murphy.

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"In just 20 minutes after quitting or sustaining from smoking your heart rate drops and that's due to your vessels opening back up, they're not constricted anymore".

It can take a smoker up to 30 attempts before they can successfully quit.

Visitors will have access to screenings for lung function, blood pressure, pulse oxygen levels and peripheral arterial disease; smoking and lung cancer information; vaping education; tips for coping with ongoing and seasonal asthma; and resources for parents and kids. Smokers who quit at age 35 gain an average of eight years of life expectancy; those who quit at age 55 gain about five years; and even long-term smokers who quit at 65 gain three years.

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