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Why 2023 is your year to quit smoking | Health Smart

The American Lung Association says this is the perfect year to quit smoking for good!

YORK, Pa. — Smoking is one of the most harmful habits, accounting for 480,000 deaths every year in the United States. 

The American Lung Association (ALA) says 2023 is the perfect year to quit tobacco use for good, for many reasons.

Every year, thousands of people make a New Year's resolution to put cigarettes down for good, and every year, people struggle to make it last.  

"The American Lung Association knows that you can quit for good," said Jennifer Folkenroth of the ALA. "In fact, over 50 million Americans have successfully quit smoking over the years, so we know it's possible."

Folkenroth says the first thing you should do if you want to quit is talk to your primary care provider about trying one of the seven Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved cessation medications. Next, get counseling from a proven resource, like the American Lung Association's "Freedom From Smoking" program or the "Not on Tobacco" teen cessation program.

"Behavioral counseling plus medication together can be that one-two combo that we know is proven effective in helping individuals not only to quit, but to maintain that tobacco-free lifestyle after breaking free," Folkenroth said.

2023 is the perfect year to quit if you live in Pennsylvania, especially if you smoke menthol cigarettes. That's because the FDA is ending sales of them. So if you use one of those products, now is the perfect time to start your journey.

Canada stopped selling menthol cigarettes in 2017, and the country saw an increase in those trying to quit.  

Tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in Pennsylvania, but Folkenroth says life is not the only thing you can gain from quitting.  

"The bonus in making 2023 your year to finally break free is saving money," Folkenroth said. "Research proves that you're looking at about $2,000 to $4,300 that you can save every single year by quitting."

She recommends having a clear plan and goal in place, and last but not least, never give up. 

"Never stop trying. We know that on average, it takes smokers eight to 10 quit attempts before they finally beat it for good."   

For more information about quitting tobacco, you can always call the Lung Help Line at 1-800-LUNGUSA, or visit their website here.  

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