Want to quit smoking? Today's the day!

  • Published
  • By Leah Melquist
  • 319th Force Support Squadron
Today, Nov. 21, 2013, is the 38th Annual Great American Smokeout.

Individuals who want to take the first steps toward quitting may sign up for the tobacco cessation class starting November 26 at 4:30 p.m. in the Health and Wellness Center.

This isn't just for smokers but smokeless tobacco users as well. We have medications and Nicotine Replacement Therapy available to help you quit. You will also receive a quit kit as well as one class participant will get a free turkey.

The benefits of quitting happen almost immediately. Quitting tobacco use is the most impactful thing you can do for your health.

· 20 minutes after quitting: Heart and blood pressure drop.
· 12 hours after quitting: Carbon monoxide levels in blood return to normal.
· Two weeks to three months after quitting: Circulation improves and lung function increases.
· One to nine months after quitting: Coughing and shortness of breath decrease; cilia, the tiny hair-like structures that move mucus out of the lungs, begin regaining normal function, increasing the ability to handle mucus, clean the lungs and reduce risk of infection.
· One year after quitting: Excess risk of coronary heart disease is half of a continuing smoker's.
· Five years after quitting: Risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus and bladder are cut in half; cervical cancer risk falls to that of a non-smoker; stroke risk drops to that of a non-smoker after 2-5 years.
· 10 years after quitting: Risk of dying from lung cancer is approximately half of that of a person who continues to smoke; risk of cancer of the larynx and pancreas decreases.
· 15 years after quitting: Risk of coronary disease is that of a non-smoker's.

The American Cancer Society indicates that quitting smoking also lowers the risk of diabetes, allows blood vessels to work better, and helps the heart and lungs. And, although quitting when one is younger obviously will reduce one's health risks more over the long haul, the ACS stresses that quitting at any age will give smokers time back on their lives that they would have lost had they continued to smoke.

For any questions call 747-3853.

Smoke or Smokeless tobacco, this can be your day.