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I want to quit smoking; how do I quit?

Smoking is an addiction. Over 4,000 chemicals are found in cigarette smoke, many of which are known carcinogens to both humans and other animals. Nicotine, a drug found naturally in tobacco, is highly addictive and makes it very hard for a person to quit smoking once they have begun. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that tobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of death in the United States, causing more than 440,000 deaths each year and resulting in an annual cost of more than $75 billion in direct medical costs. Nationally, smoking results in more than 5.6 million years of potential life lost each year.

What kinds of medications treat nicotine withdrawal symptoms?

If you smoke every day, you are probably physically dependent on nicotine. You will have withdrawal symptoms when you stop smoking. You may become irritable and agitated, have trouble sleeping, have difficulty concentrating or experience mood swings. These withdrawal symptoms are often the reason smokers give up their effort to quit. Your family doctor can tell you about medications that help people quit smoking. One or more of these medications may be right for you:

  • Nicotine gum (brand name: Nicorette)
  • Nicotine patches (brand names: Habitrol, Nicoderm, Nicotrol, ProStep)
  • Nicotine nasal spray (brand name: Nicotrol NS)
  • Nicotine inhaler (brand name: Nicotrol Inhaler)
  • Bupropion (brand name: Zyban)

Where can I go for help to stop smoking?

The following organizations have programs designed to help smokers recognize and cope with problems that come up during quitting and to provide support and encouragement in staying quit.

  • Wisconsin Tobacco QuitLine: 800-227-2345
  • American Cancer Society (Fresh Start Program) web address: http://www.cancer.org
  • American Lung Association (Freedom from Smoking) web address: http://www.lungusa.org
  • CDC Tobacco Information and Prevention SourceWeb address: http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco
  • 800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) Web address: http://www.ctri.wisc.edu
  • Smokefree.gov (Info on state phone-based quitting programs) Telephone: 1-800-QUITNOW (1-800-784-8669) http://www.smokefree.gov/


Is it okay for a teenager to smoke?

-term addiction to nicotine than people who start smoking later in life. It is estimated that approximately 4.5 million adolescents in the United States are smokers. And many of them continue to smoke regularly as adults, increasing their risk of dying prematurely from smoking-related diseases, such as lung cancer, heart disease, and stroke.

Why is second–hand smoke dangerous?

When a cigarette is smoked, about half of the smoke is inhaled / exhaled by the smoker and the other half floats around in the air. Secondhand smoke plays a part in more health problems than you might realize. Breathing in secondhand smoke is harmful for smokers and nonsmokers alike. Secondhand smoke is full of harmful chemicals; 200 of which are known to be poisonous, and upwards of 60 have been identified as carcinogens.

  • Secondhand smoke kills about 3,000 nonsmokers each year from lung cancer.
  • Secondhand smoke causes up to 300,000 lung infections (such as pneumonia and bronchitis) in infants and young children each year.
  • Secondhand smoke causes wheezing, coughing, colds, earaches, and asthma attacks.
  • Secondhand smoke fills the air with many of the same poisons found in the air around toxic waste dumps.

1. American Cancer Society, Cigarette Smoking, 2002
2. U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, Preventing Tobacco Use among Young People, A Report of the Surgeon General, 1994
Other facts and figures for this article obtained from:




Approximately 80% of adult smokers started smoking before the age of 18. According to the CDC, more than 3,000 young people become regular smokers every day, which is more than one million new smokers a year.

  • Teen smokers get sick more often than teens who don't smoke.
  • Teen smokers have smaller lungs and weaker hearts than teens who don't smoke.
  • Teen smokers are more likely to use alcohol and other drugs.
  • Teen smokers are more likely to engage in high risk behaviors, including fighting and having unprotected sex

People who start smoking young are more likely to have a long


By saying "I Want to Quit", you've taken the first big step already. Quitting requires commitment, motivation and resources. There is no one right way to quit, but there are some key elements in quitting smoking successfully. These 4 factors are crucial:

  • Making the decision to quit
  • Setting a quit date and choosing a quit plan
  • Dealing with withdrawal
  • Staying quit (maintenance)