Today is the Great American Smokeout, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. Smokers were challenged to stop lighting up for 24 hours, and encouraged to make a plan to kick the habit permanently.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, in Wyoming around 20% of the residents smoke, but a survey from the Cancer Society shows 70% of those smokers desire to quit. Wyoming's tobacco cessation coordinator, Kathi Wilson, says quitting “cold turkey” used to be a big part of the promotion, but that's changed over the years because the method has become less effective.
Wilson says Wyoming offers free counseling and resources to help people quit. Folks can sign up at the Wyoming quit tobacco website – we'll provide a link on our website, sheridanmedia.com – or by calling a toll-free number – also posted at our website. The benefits of signing up include free products and payments toward prescriptions.
The American Cancer Society says 1/3 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 through tobacco taxes.