By Connor Gilbertson
Public Relations Coordinator for the Alcohol
and Drug Abuse Council of Deep East Texas
Quitting smoking doesn’t happen in one day, but it does start with day one. It takes time and a plan to quit smoking. The Great American Smokeout is Thursday and could be your day to start your journey toward a healthier and smoke-free life.
The Great American Smokeout began in 1977 and was first held in San Francisco. From 1977 through the 1990s, state and local governments began to raise taxes on cigarettes and discourage tobacco use. As a result, those states with strong tobacco control laws saw a 42% decrease of smoking in adults.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that the use of tobacco leads to long-term illnesses and damages every organ of the body. Tobacco kills one out of five people in the U.S. that smoke. Unfortunately, more dollars and efforts are made to market tobacco products by the tobacco industry than to offer prevention and support toward quitting the use of these products.
Secondhand smoke is another concern, especially due to the health issues that nonsmokers suffer. Secondhand smoke contains thousands of chemicals, hundreds of which are toxic, and many of these toxic chemicals can cause cancer.
However, there have been improvements made in public venues to ban smoking so nonsmokers can safely enjoy their environment. Business settings that enforce smokefree policies offer a positive experience for their customers. Some of these benefits include improvement of air quality, improvement of health, and resolution in high levels of compliance. What can be done to support the smoking population in quitting the use of tobacco? The CDC identifies November 17, 2022 as the Great American Smokeout Day, which during this time tobacco users are encouraged to identify this date as their “day one” for the start of a smokefree life.
If you or someone you know are in need of ADAC’s services, please call 800-445-8562 or 936-634-5753. You can do it.