Resources & Steps to Quitting
Smoking and tobacco use have been associated with multiple health conditions and diseases including:
- Heart disease
Tobacco usage can cause damage to nearly every organ in the body. The benefits and improvements to your health from quitting begin almost immediately after your last usage.
Smoking Cessation Counseling
The Blessing Cancer Center hosts free monthly smoking cessation counseling dates, free of charge, for patients of Blessing Health System. Visit events.blessinghealth.org and search "smoking" to find the next upcoming date.
Making the Decision to Quit
Knowing your habits around smoking can also help you be better prepared. This smoking habits quiz from the American Cancer Society can help you identify your level of dependence on nicotine and the best ways to overcome it.
If your dependency and habits are strong, you may want to consider a quit aid to help reduce withdrawal symptoms. These may include:
- Nicotine patches
- Nasal spray
- Prescription medications
It is important to talk to your doctor before deciding on the best option for you, especially if you take other prescription medication.
Succeed on your Quit Day
As you approach your Quit Day, cutting back on when, where, and how much tobacco you use will also help you be better prepared. Identify your strongest triggers or habits and try avoiding those first, as they will be the most difficult to overcome.
On your Quit Day try focusing on these key elements:
- Drink lots of water
- Stay busy
- Avoid situations where you know the urge to use tobacco will be strong
- Think about ways you can change your routines or new healthy habits
- Start a new hobby
Resources To Quit Smoking
Having support is important to your success. There are many quit programs, counseling and other resources available to help. The Blessing Cancer Center offers free Smoking Cessation counseling for Blessing Health System patients. For more information, contact Stephanie Willey, RN, Outreach Education Nurse, at (217) 223-8400 ext. 7718.
Additional resources to help you quit are below:
- American Cancer Society
- American Lung Association
- American Heart Association
- Illinois Tobacco Quitline
- (866) 784-8937 (open 7 am - 11 pm)
- Iowa Tobacco Quitline
- Missouri Tobacco Quitline
The Great American Smokeout
For more than 40 years, the American Cancer Society has hosted the Great American Smokeout on the third Thursday of November. The event offers an opportunity to promote and encourage smoking cessation, which is the act of quitting smoking.