The Great American Smokeout

Pile of used cigarettes
Image Source: Paweł Czerwiński/Unsplash

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States, accounting for 29% of all cancer deaths. Not only does smoking cause cancer, it can damage nearly every organ in the body, including the lungs, heart, blood vessels, reproductive organs, mouth, skin, eyes, and bones.1 Tomorrow is The American Cancer Society’s 43rd annual Great American Smokeout® (GASO). GASO is the perfect opportunity for everyone to commit to living tobacco-free. We know that quitting smoking can be difficult and can take more than a day. GASO isn’t necessarily the day for smokers to quit smoking, but rather the day for smokers to start their journey toward a smoke-free life.

How to Get Started

Quitting isn’t an easy task. It takes planning, commitment, trial and error, and a lot of support. Smokers are strongly advised to use proven cessation methods, such as prescription medications and counseling, or a combination of both, to quit smoking. It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor or pharmacist to get their advice.1 If you’re interested in creating your quit plan, click here for more info.

How to Help Someone that Smokes

If you have a friend or family member ready to quit, here are a few recommendations to help you along the way2:

  • Ask the person whether they want you to ask regularly how they’re doing. Ask how they’re feeling – not just whether they’ve stayed quit.
  • Don’t judge, nag, preach, tease, or scold. This may make the smoker feel worse about him or herself. You don’t want your loved one to turn to a cigarette to soothe hurt feelings.
  • If the person relapses, encourage them to try again. Studies show that most people who don’t succeed in quitting are ready to try again in the near future.

For more tips, click here.

Tria Health and Tobacco Cessation

For employers that offer Tria Health’s Tobacco Cessation Program, Tria provides free confidential counseling with a clinical pharmacist. If you ready to quit smoking, Tria Health’s pharmacist will assist you in managing your medications and finding a treatment plan that works for you.

Tria Health assists, not only members who smoke cigarettes, but members looking to end their use of all tobacco products (e-cigarettes, smoke-free tobacco, hookah, etc.) While scientists are still learning more about the effects of e-cigarettes or e-hookahs, there is already enough evidence to justify efforts to prevent e-cigarette use. We know that the vapor from e-cigarettes is harmful because it contains harmful ingredients, including nicotine. Nicotine exposure during adolescence can cause addiction and can harm the developing brain.3 In addition, smokeless tobacco products also contains many harmful ingredients.4 Tria Health believes in order to maintain optimal health, it is imperative to end the use of all tobacco products.

Have any questions?

Contact the Tria Health Help Desk: 1.888.799.8742

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.cancer.org/healthy/stay-away-from-tobacco/great-american-smokeout.html
  2. https://www.cancer.org/healthy/stay-away-from-tobacco/helping-a-smoker-quit.html
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/features/ecigarettes-young-people/index.html
  4. https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/smokeless/health_effects/index.htm

What’s the deal with e-Cigarettes?

What are electronic cigarettes? 
Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) came onto the market in 2007 and are battery operated devices that deliver nicotine via vapor. These differ from the traditional cigarette as there is no tobacco in the e-cig compared to its traditional counterpart.

Great unknowns about e-cigs:

  • Long-term risks associated with the inhalation of nicotine vapor
  • Exactly how much nicotine is delivered per inhalation
  • If there is proven benefit to using these products
  • What exactly is in the e-cigarette nicotine cartridge (many of these are manufactured in China and under no quality control)

Research:
A study published in the journal of Addictive Behaviors found that people who use e-cigs in order to quit smoking either became hooked on the e-cig or go back to using traditional cigarettes.

A study published in The Lancet found no statistically significant difference concerning the use of the e-cig compared the nicotine patch in terms of smoking cessation benefits.

Faulty Reasoning:
It is believed that the use of the e-cig creates an illusion on behalf of the smoker as they think they are doing something positive for themselves. In reality, the individual is maintaining their smoking habit.  Editors of The Lancet consider the e-cig “a moral quandary”. Other researchers agree that converting millions of smokers to the e-cig won’t necessarily lead to a cleaner, healthier environment as individuals are still addicted to nicotine.

Take Home Message:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not find a therapeutic purpose or benefit to the electronic cigarette at this time.