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New York State Smokers' Quitline offers support for 'Great American Smokeout'


Fri, Nov 3rd 2017 05:05 pm
Annual nationwide event on Nov. 16 can be a day to stop smoking or develop a quit-plan; Quitline offers coaching and support, such as a free two-week starter kit of nicotine replacement therapy patches 
Every day, thousands of New York residents struggle to break the addiction of tobacco use. For most smokers, it takes several quit attempts before they can finally give up tobacco. The New York State Smokers' Quitline reminds New Yorkers help is available, and support and medications will increase their chances for success.
"The Great American Smokeout" on Thursday, Nov. 16, a day when thousands of smokers across the country quit together, might be the perfect time to develop a quit-plan or begin a smoke-free life.
More than 2.2 million New York adults still smoke and more than 26,000 die as a result each year. In fact, more people die every year from smoking than from murder, AIDS, suicide, drugs, car crashes and alcohol combined.
Fortunately, the New York State Smokers' Quitline is available as a free resource for all New Yorkers seeking help. Quit Coaches at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) can provide personalized coaching and support, as well as information about stop-smoking medications. Most callers also will qualify for a two-week starter kit of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) patches.
The Quitline is available seven days a week beginning at 9 a.m., and additional resources are available online at www.nysmokefree.com.
Smokers should also talk to their healthcare providers about quitting smoking and ask for a prescription for stop-smoking medications, which are covered by most health insurance plans.
One tip the New York State Smokers' Quitline offers - especially for the American Cancer Society's annual "Great American Smokeout" event - is to remember the 5 D's when trying to quit, particularly when cigarette cravings occur. They are as follows:
  • Delay a minute or two and the urge will pass.
  • Drink water to fight cravings.
  • Do something else. Distract yourself. ... Walk, call a friend, run errands.
  • Deep breathe. It will relax you. Close your eyes and take 10 slow, deep breaths.
  • Discuss your thoughts and feelings with someone close to you.
The New York State Smokers' Quitline also reminds health care providers that resources are available online at www.nysmokefree.com. A series of office flyers to promote the "Great American Smokeout" can be downloaded for free and cover topics that potential quitters worry about: weight gain, added stress, loss of friends and loss of socialization. The website also provides details about the Opt-to-Quit referral program, which can assist health care providers in making it easier for their patients to quit smoking.
Quit Coaches are available seven days a week to discuss quit-options and provide additional tips to beat cravings. New Yorkers can call the Quitline at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m., and Friday through Sunday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.
The New York State Smokers' Quitline is a service of the New York State Department of Health and based at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. It is one of the first and busiest state quitlines in the nation, and has responded to more than 2.5 million calls since its inception in 1999. Call 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) or visit www.nysmokefree.com for more information.

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