Do You Smoke? Are You Ready to Quit?
Making the choice to stop smoking is a big and personal decision. You may need time to mentally prepare prior to parting ways with tobacco. If you’re ready to take the leap, please consider reading this article which will focus on: smoking statistics, smoking and your health, and smoking cessation.
Smoking stats and facts (just a few)
- According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) smoking is the leading cause of PREVENTABLE disease and death.1
- In 2015 approximately 15 percent of the U.S. population reported being current cigarette smokers.1
- Smoking cessation at any age benefits smokers. Counseling and medication are both helpful and improve the chances that a smoker will be successful at quitting.2
- Smoking is an expensive behavior. A person who smokes 1 pack per day over the course of 1 year will spend on average $2,292.20.3
THE BIG STUFF: Reduce your risk of the following diseases/conditions:
- Heart disease: “Smoking is associated with a 2 to 3 times higher incidence of CHD (coronary heart disease) and mortality.”4
- High risk lipid profile: Smoking can raise triglycerides levels and lower HDL levels
- Gum disease5
- Health problems associated with secondhand smoke exposure which can impact you and anyone in close contact with you.
THE SMALLER STUFF: Reduce the following annoyances with smoking cessation:
- Financial burden
- Bad breath
- Yellow teeth
- Clothing, hair, and hands that smell like smoke
- Exposure to bitter cold temperatures from smoking outside
- Pestering from family and friends
Before you quit smoking, have a plan in place:
- Meet with your doctor to discuss potential withdrawal symptoms, cessation programs/support groups, and possible medications that may help with quitting.
- Share your plan to quit with loved ones. Having a good support system is important to your success.
- Check out smokefree.gov for free resources3
- Consider using one of the following apps on your phone:
- LIVESTRONG MyQuit COACH
- Quit Smoking: Cessation Nation
- Quitter’s Circle
- Smoke Free
- How will you handle cravings?6
- Call a family member or friend for support
- Go for a walk
- Chew a piece of sugar-free gum
- Deep breathing
- Try nicotine replacement therapy (i.e. patches, gums, or lozenges), but discuss with your physician
- How you will reward yourself when you have successfully kicked smoking?
- Some people use the money they would’ve spent on cigarettes and spend it on something special such as a family vacation, shopping trip, or spa getaway.
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