Tobacco-free for the New Year

The holiday season is here, and with it comes many traditions and new opportunities. Many people look to the New Year as a time to try something new, make positive changes, and support their loved ones in their efforts to make healthy decisions.

For tobacco users, the New Year can be a great time to quit smoking. Family and friends can help to support and motivate people in their efforts to quit. By making your home and car smoke-free, you can set a tobacco-free example and protect nonsmokers from the health harms caused by secondhand smoke exposure. Family gatherings present a chance for family elders to talk to kids about the dangers of tobacco use, including the use of e-cigarettes.

Quitting tobacco can be challenging because nicotine is a highly addictive drug. The good news is that there are resources available to help, and the health benefits are immense.

Research shows that while quitting is difficult for most tobacco users, people who use tobacco can increase their success in quitting with help. Quitters are most successful when using a combination of therapies, including resources such as nicotine replacement, counseling, self-help materials, and a strong support network of family and friends.

The Michigan Tobacco Quitline is an evidence-based service that continues to provide free telephone coaching for the uninsured, pregnant women, residents enrolled in Medicaid and Medicare, veterans, cancer patients, and American Indians, and free nicotine replacement therapy to those who qualify. New this year is an online, interactive coaching program option. The same program that is available on the phone can now be done online with the Quitline’s specially trained web coaches.

Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in Michigan, killing more than 16,200 residents each year. Each year, 4,400 Michigan kids become new, daily smokers. Thirty percent (30 percent) of cancer deaths in Michigan are attributable to cigarette smoking. 19.4 percent of Michigan adults smoke cigarettes, 10.5 percent of Michigan high school students smoke cigarettes, and another 14.8 percent of these kids use e-cigarettes. The CDC recommends that Michigan spend $110 million on tobacco prevention and control programming. Michigan spends just $1.6 million. In contrast, the tobacco industry spends an estimated $320 million to market their products in Michigan each year.

“The holidays can be a stressful time, but smoking doesn’t have to be a part of them. Calling the Michigan Tobacco Quitline now can help people make the holidays, and 2019, tobacco-free. Quitting tobacco today will lead to a lifetime of health benefits.”

For more information, contact the Michigan Tobacco Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW