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Quitting makes you a winner

Published in Tobacco Treatment, Inside CentraCare Author: Sarah Volker, BS, CTTS

Exercise Physiologist/Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist

Do you want to quit using tobacco? Why not pick Nov. 17 — the American Cancer Society Great American Smokeout®? Research shows that if you pick a day within a month and stick to it, you are more likely to succeed in quitting.

You know all of the health reasons why you should quit, but just think of all of the money you will save! The average retail price per pack (including tax) in Minnesota is $8.40. That would be an annual savings of $3,066 for a pack a day smoker. Treat yourself to a nice vacation instead.

Quitting tobacco is like losing weight — it takes commitment of a long period of time. It helps if you have a good support system. Tell friends and family about your quit day. Ask someone to quit with you so you can help each other.

Here are some tips that might help you:

  • Stock up on oral substitutes like sugarless gum, carrot sticks or hard candy.
  • Get rid of all of the tobacco, ashtrays, etc., in your home, car and workplace.
  • Sign up for a program such as the Outpatient Nicotine Dependence Program at CentraCare Heart & Vascular Center.
  • Download the American Cancer Society’s Countdown Clock to receive daily tips to help you prepare to quit.
  • Download the Quit For Life® mobile app for Apple and android.
  • Download the American Cancer Society’s Craving Stopper for encouragement and tips for 30 days after you quit.
  • Stay active — walk, exercise and do hobbies.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Avoid situations that trigger your need for tobacco.
  • Limit or avoid alcohol.
  • Change your routine. Do you always have a cigarette with your morning coffee? Switch to tea or iced coffee to get out of that habit.

Learn more about the Great American Smokeout.