VA North Texas Health Care System
Tobacco Cessation Program Helps Veterans Quit Smoking
Quitting smoking, dipping and chewing, is certainly easier said than done.
Tobacco use isn't just costly in terms of money. There are costs to your health and the health of loved ones around you. Approximately 40,000 research studies have proven that tobacco use causes disease and death. Each year more Americans die from tobacco-related diseases than AIDS, drug abuse, car accidents and murder combined.
Eight out of 10 users say they want to quit if only they could find a way. They feel they owe it to themselves and to the ones they love. Believe it or not, we know you can do it if you have a firm commitment and are willing to try changing some of your habits. You don't have to be 100% sure you will succeed. It's not unusual for people to question whether or not they can do it. But it's also not unusual for people who complete the four-week tobacco cessation program at VA North Texas to say they are surprised at how well the program worked for them and how easy it was.
The program considers that it can take more than willpower alone. When fighting tobacco use, it's important to look at the addiction, habit and emotional dependence. In VA's program which includes motivational interviewing along with positive approaches to behavior change and coaching, your tobacco use behavior changes as well as other behaviors and situations associated with using tobacco.
Nicotine patches are also used to prevent nicotine cravings and usually result in success. If problems occur with the patch, other medications such as nicotine gum or lozenges may be prescribed. These along with learning coping skills to deal with tobacco urges combine as effective tools to become tobacco free.
Quitting today means a healthier tomorrow. It's never too late to stop using tobacco.
Walk the walk, and remember these tips if you’re trying to quit.
- Think of meaningful reasons to quit.
- Use tobacco outside and not under any roof, car, etc.
- Do not wear your tobacco. Keep it separate from yourself.
- Take a break from all other activities when you use tobacco.
- Make your home is tobacco-free for everyone.
- If you smoke, only use one ashtray that you keep with your cigarettes.
- Tell people you intend to quit and tell them your quit date.
- Set a quit date, preferably about two weeks and no more than one month away.
- Develop a plan for your financial savings.
Don't give up on quitting! No matter how long you've smoked or how many times you've tried to quit, you can be smoke-free and VA North Texas can help. Contact the Tobacco Cessation Coordinator at 1-800-849-3597, extension 70534.
For more information, visit http://www.publichealth.va.gov/smoking/.