Throughout November, which is lung cancer awareness month, Emanuel Cancer Center is encouraging smokers to kick the habit with a “Quit and Quit Again” campaign, which offers a free “Quit Kit “to smokers.
According to the American Lung Association, six out of 10 smokers who try to quit smoking fail in their first attempt.
The key for most smokers is to quit, and then quit again.
“While most smokers are not successful the first time they try to quit, with each attempt they become a little wiser about what to do and not do the next time,” said Emanuel Cancer Center Executive Director Michael Iltis. “The ‘Quit and Quit Again’ campaign aims to change the way people think about past quit attempts and motivate them to try again.”
Studies have shown that even hard-core smokers who quit before the age of 50 cut their risk of dying from smoking-related diseases in half, and smokers who quit before the age of 30 reduce their risk by 90 percent.
“The kit contains a 35-page page booklet with some very helpful tips and resources to help you quit smoking, some gum, mints and lip balm to help keep your hands busy with something besides a cigarette. Some people opt to use vapes and shop for vape juice online to wean themselves off of the nicotine, but these kits make a good alternative. The kit also contains a journal and pen to track your progress,” Iltis said. “It also has information about a free six-week smoking-cessation program we’ll be offering in January.”
The booklet has information on free smoker’s helplines, quitting without gaining weight, quitting tips and a breakdown of quitting aids that are available. It also has information on how to help someone else quit.
According to the latest figures from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 43 million American adults are current smokers. Smoking-related diseases claim an estimated 443,000 lives each year, including those affected indirectly, such as babies born prematurely due to prenatal maternal smoking and victims of “secondhand” exposure to tobacco’s carcinogens. Smoking costs the United States more than $193 billion each year, including $97 billion in lost productivity and $96 billion in direct health care expenditures, or an average of $4,446 per adult smoker.
Free Quit Kits can be ordered online at www.emanuelmedicalcenter.org/cancer or can be picked up at Emanuel Cancer Center from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays throughout November. The center is located at 880 E. Tuolumne Ave., Turlock.