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OH Gets Ready for the Great American Smokeout

November 15, 2010

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Maybe this is the week to quit smoking. Thursday is the American Cancer Society's 35th annual Great American Smokeout, and experts say you can add up to eight years to your life by quitting. The adult smoking rate is hovering around 20 percent in Ohio, but it's been on the rise recently. And of the 36 million Americans who still smoke daily, most would rather not, according to American Cancer Society spokeswoman Allison Miller.

"In numerous studies, it is shown that upwards of 70 percent of smokers in total want to quit. It's just a matter of being successful, and it often takes several different tries."

Miller says you can put the odds of quitting in your favor by using the available free resources to make a plan. Then, have your last cigarette on Wednesday - and make Thursday the beginning of a much healthier life.

Miller says the American Cancer Society website, cancer.org, has plenty of helpful ideas.

"There are several tips and plans, so that people can develop that plan in advance, whether they're going to quit on the Great American Smokeout or they're looking just to quit in general."

Miller says local and state laws, such as Ohio's Smoke Free Workplace Act, have been helpful.

"Second-hand smoke has 4000 chemicals, 60 of which are known to cause cancer, and just getting that out of all of our workplaces is a tremendous step forward in the fight against cancer."

The American Cancer Society says one-third of cancer deaths could be prevented if people avoided tobacco products. But others see smoking as a personal choice - and a source of revenue for the state.


Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - OH