It can be one of the hardest things to do: quit smoking. But medical experts
say it can also be one of the best things you can do for your health.
One in every five deaths in the United States is smoking-related according
to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In fact, the
CDC points out about 10 million people in the United States have died
from causes attributed to smoking (heart disease, emphysema, and other
respiratory diseases) since the first Surgeon General’s report on
smoking and health in 1964.
“While a recent government study found that 70% of smokers would
like to quit, it can be very difficult especially if you go it alone,”
says Peggy Messick, CVMC RN, BSN, OCN. “Quit lines have been found
to be helpful to assist people with smoking cessation. In North Carolina, 1-
800-QUIT-NOW provides free coaching services for residents who desire to
stop smoking or dipping. Available for English and Spanish speaking individuals,
the service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
There are also a number of physician-approved apps now available for smart
phone users that let you personalize your approach to quit smoking. You
can choose to quit “cold turkey” or reduce nicotine use with
a step-down approach. Features include analyzing your nicotine consumption,
tracking cravings and making meaningful resolutions.
Physicians are also important partners in smoking cessation efforts. Smokers
are encouraged to consult with their primary care provider before using
an over-the-counter nicotine replacement to see which one would is best
for them. Providers can also prescribe smoking cessation medications proven
effective and can provide the support and encouragement you need to kick
the habit for good.
For more information on CVMC’s resources to help you quit smoking,
contact Peggy Messick at the Health First Center – firstname.lastname@example.org
or 828.485.2300 x6202