HOUSTON (November 12, 2015)

According to the American Cancer Society (ACS), tobacco use is responsible for nearly one in five deaths in the U.S., and it remains the nation’s single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death. However, no matter how old you are or how long you’ve smoked, quitting can help you live longer and healthier.

“The statistics are startling. If you’re a smoker, now is as good a time as any to stop,” said Merilyn Oliveros, RN, Oncology Community Outreach Nurse at Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center.

ACS research shows that smokers are most successful in kicking the habit when they have support, such as:

  • Telephone smoking-cessation hotlines
  • Nicotine replacement products
  • Prescription medicine to lessen cravings
  • Tobacco cessation groups
  • Encouragement and support from friends and family members
  • Counseling
  • Online quit groups
  • Guide books

“You don’t have to do it alone,” added Oliveros. “We have a variety of resources and programs to help you prepare for a successful quit attempt.”

Smokers can jump start their journey on November 19 during The Great American Smokeout®, an annual event that challenges people to stop using tobacco and educates them about the many tools to help them quit. Memorial Hermann Memorial City will participate and invites tobacco users to stop by 921 Gessner between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. to get information about how to kick the habit.

Resources that will be discussed include:

  • FREE FreshStart Tobacco Cessation Program at Memorial Hermann Memorial City: Classes begin the first Monday of every month (four class series) from 1 to 2 p.m. Confidential one-on-one sessions are also available.
  • Lung Cancer Screening: Lung cancer screening with a Low-Dose Computerized Tomography (CT) scan has been shown to save lives by finding lung cancer early when it is easier to treat. In fact, research indicates these scans can lower the risk of death from lung cancer by 20 percent in high-risk populations. Ask your doctor or call Memorial Hermann Memorial City’s Lung Nurse Navigator at 713-242-3564 to find out if you are at high risk.
  • Call Now: Stop-smoking hotlines are an easy-to-use resource, and they are available in all 50 states by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW or by visiting www.smokefree.gov.