On average, research shows that smokers try to quit at least seven times before they are successful. Smoking also remains the largest cause of preventable diseases and death.
Tobacco use causes more deaths each year than alcohol, car accidents, suicide, AIDS, homicide, and illegal drug use combined. And yet, more than 42 million Americans still smoke cigarettes.
Each year, the American Cancer Society sponsors the Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday in November to encourage smokers to make a plan to quit.
Physicians are often encouraging their patients who smoke to kick the habit. This is just a reminder of the many resources available to help them quit.
“Quitting smoking can be challenging, but your chances for success increase when you have help and support,” said Secretary of Health Michael Wolf. “The department [Pennsylvania Department of Health] offers services that can help smokers quit for good, and we encourage Pennsylvanians to take the first step toward living a longer, healthier life.”
Resources for Pennsylvania residents include:
- Free access to Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669), where there are trained staff available to help callers develop and implement a plan to quit
- One-on-one coaching
- Free nicotine replacement therapy (patches, lozenges, gum)
Online resources are available at https://pa.quitlogix.org.
While encouraging your patients who smoke to quit, also point them to resources that will help them kick the habit.