Helpful Tips and Resources To Quit Smoking
The highest risk factors for lung cancer is smoking and exposure to second hand smoke. Statistics show that 80 - 90% of people with lung cancer are, or have been, smokers.
Quitting smoking is not easy. For most people, several attempts are made to quit smoking before long term success is achieved. Essentially, there are two reasons why quitting smoking is so difficult:
- Physical dependence to nicotine
- Psychological dependence to smoking
For most people, it is the psychological dependence that is the tougher hurdle to overcome. For these people, the desire to smoke lingers long after the physical dependence is over.
In order to quit, there are four things to think about:
- Deciding to quit
- Setting a quit date and choosing a plan to quit
- Dealing with withdrawal (physical dependence)
- Staying quit
Sometimes people find out they have lung cancer while they are still smoking, and may wonder if quitting now will make any difference in their overall outcome. The answer is yes, it will. The following are some benefits for quitting smoking:
- Increased lung capacity, decreased shortness of breath
- Improved circulation
- Improved cough, decreased sinus congestion
- Decreased chance of having a heart attack
- Improved sense of smell and taste
- In time, help decrease the chances of a new lung cancer from starting
- Improvements in lung function and circulation will help with a speedier recovery from surgery, and make you abetter surgical candidate. It will also enhance the outcomes for chemotherapy and radiation.
Smoking Cessation Resources
California Smoker’s Help Line
1-800-NO BUTTS (1-800-662-8887)
This is a free statewide research-based tobacco cessation project operated by the University of California. Callers are offered self-help materials, a local resource listing and telephone counseling. The helpline is available in five languages, as well as a TDD line for the hearing impaired.
American Lung Association - Freedom From Smoking Online
Conducts programs on tobacco education for adults and teenagers; provides a free program for “Freedom From Smoking” online in a 7 module course. Also offered is a freedom from smoking group clinic, audio cassette program, and a 46-page guide to freedom from smoking to help quit smoking for good.
1-877-879-6422 for General Information
1-800-642-0666 for Local Meetings
This is a non-profit, 12-step fellowship program for smoking cessation. The fellowship offers group support and recovery using the 12-Steps adapted from Alcoholics Anonymous and offers support to stop smoking 365 days a year. There is a weekly meeting scheduled at Huntington Hospital, Saturday 4pm, Dining Room D in the cafeteria.
Internet Information Web Sites
American Heart Association
American Cancer Society
Agency For Health Care Policy
American Lung Association
Foundation For A Smoke-Free America
Office Of Smoking And Health