The Wellness Committee at St Anthony’s Medical Center has sent out a reminder notice that Thursday, November 21, is designated as the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout day. Smokers and chewing tobacco users are encouraged to take this day to stop their smoking habit or refrain from using nicotine for 24 hours, in hopes it will help them kick the habit. Most tobacco users need some type of support to stop this habit. There is a great website sponsored by the American Cancer Society: http://www.ffsonline.org/ . This website provides a wealth of information – you can pledge to quit smoking, can sign up to receive supportive newsletters, find local groups of people who have quit smoking/tobacco use and can support you, get tips, health and nutritional information. “Most importantly, seek encouragement and support from family, friends and co-workers”.
Tobacco use is one the leading causes of lung cancer, throat cancer, emphysema, COPD, as well as second-hand smoking issues suffered by those who live with a smoker. Besides reducing yellowing teeth, wrinkles around the mouth, and smelly clothing & curtains, other positive effects of quitting smoking include: within 24 hours after quitting, blood pressure and pulse rates may drop; within 48 hours, the carbon monoxide level in the blood is returning to normal; within 2-12 weeks, circulation and lung functions improve; and within 1 year of quitting, excess risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker.
So on Thursday, 11/21, please consider taking a break from cigarettes or chewing tobacco. And if you’re not a tobacco user, but know someone who is, please reach out and take this day to encourage them to stop.