Program Can Help Residents Quit Tobacco Use Successfully
Every New Year’s Eve, millions of Americans resolve to quit smoking, but they pick up their cigarettes again in a matter of weeks or even days.
The North Carolina Tobacco Use Quitline, 1-800-QUIT-NOW, is now available to offer free support services to those who want to quit.
Tobacco use is the No. 1 cause of preventable death in the United States, killing more than 440,000 Americans each year. It is also the top cause of preventable death in North Carolina, and is a leading cause for several cancers and a variety of other debilitating illnesses including heart disease, emphysema, asthma, blindness and leukemia.
Quitting tobacco is the single most important thing that an individual can do to prolong his or her life. But while studies show that most tobacco users want to quit, many are unable to overcome their addiction.
Telephone quitlines help tobacco users quit their addiction by offering advice, support and referrals to local cessation resources. Scientific evidence shows that quitlines are effective tools to help tobacco users quit.
The North Carolina Health and Wellness Trust Fund (HWTF), in partnership with the N.C. Division of Public Health (DPH), recently launched the first state-funded quitline service. It is available to all state residents at no charge at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669).
“While the Tobacco Use Quitline is available to everyone, the Health and Wellness Trust Fund is especially concerned that we help our teens and young adults get off tobacco,” says Lt. Governor Beverly Perdue, who serves as HWTF chair. “We want to help raise the first tobacco-free generation in North Carolina.”
Quitline NC is available daily from 8 a.m. until midnight. Trained quit coaches help tailor a cessation plan for each tobacco user who wants assistance, including those who use spit tobacco. Coaching is available in English, Spanish and a variety of other languages.
“The holidays can be a stressful time, so without the right support, it can be easy to fall back on old habits like smoking,” says Sallie Beth Johnson, a health educator with FirstHealth of the Carolinas Community Health Services. “Quitline NC provides trained tobacco-cessation specialists who can help you through this difficult process of quitting. And starting the New Year tobacco-free is the best holiday gift you can give yourself.”
For more information, visit www.QuitlineNC.com or call (877) 342-2255 about programs in Moore County.
The NC Health and Wellness Trust Fund makes North Carolina stronger, both physically and economically, by funding programs that promote preventive health.