THANK A QUITTER

Editor, Daily News

This Thanksgiving season, I’d like to remind readers to thank a co-worker, friend or family member who has quit smoking. Many smokers say quitting is the hardest thing they have ever done and any amount of recognition can help someone stay quit.

Smoking is the number one cause of preventable death and disease in Massachusetts. Nicotine is a very addictive drug and it takes most smokers several tries to quit for good. So reach out to smokers or ex-smokers. Let them know you are proud of how hard they’re working to better their wellbeing. Thank them for improving their health and the health of the people around them.

If you’re a smoker, even though the holidays can be a tough time to quit, they are a great time to get support from your loved ones to help you try to quit. If you have tried in the past, keep trying. Take advantage of the many resources available in Massachusetts to help you reach your goal.

Smokers can call the Mass. Smokers Helpline at 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669) to talk with a free quit coach or enroll online through KeepTryingMA.org. The Helpline is open 24 hours each day, seven days a week (excluding Thanksgiving and Christmas). Smokers can receive a four-week supply of free nicotine replacement help from the patch, gum or lozenge. Online supports include quit planning tools, peer support and motivational text messages.

Smokers who get support and use stop-smoking medicines are nearly three times as likely to quit for good as those who try to quit on their own. Quitting is hard — give thanks to a smoker in your life for quitting or for trying to quit. Every email, text message, phone call, or encouraging word makes a difference.

Tina Grosowsky,

Project Coordinator

Central Mass.

Tobacco Free Community Partnership 

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Athol Daily News

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