By Tessa Willie |

The Crestwood HEROES (Helping Explain the Risk of Every Substance), along with other area youth Substance Abuse Prevention groups, encourage you to kick your smoking habit. March 19 is nationally recognized as Kick Butts Day. Riley Galvin, a member of HEROES states, “I want to inspire youth and adults to partake in this event because quitting tobacco can change someone’s life.” This is a day of activism that empowers youth to stand up and speak out against Big Tobacco.

In 2012, an estimated 18.1% of Iowa adults were current cigarette smokers. Too often, people think of the smoker in their life as someone who simply can’t kick a “nasty habit.” We know that’s dead wrong – smoking is an addiction that most smokers desperately want to overcome. But it takes an average of eleven quit attempts before they succeed. Smokers and the people that love them need to know this fact. When smokers have the emotional support of their loved ones, they have a better chance of quitting – however many times it takes them to quit for good.

Quitting has benefits, no matter how long you have used tobacco.

If you are at least 12 years old, you can get free help to quit and increase your chances to quit successfully. Quit tobacco use with coaching services 24 hours a day from Quitline over the phone, 1-800-QUIT NOW, or  Research shows phone coaching is twice as effective as smokers trying to quit on their own. Anyone at least 18 years old can get eight weeks of free nicotine gum and patches.

Celebrate Kick Butts Day with us on March 19.

If you smoke:

  1. Try to give up smoking just for the day.
  2. Make a decision to quit and start by calling Quitline.
  3. Join other Americans in making this the first day of your attempt to quit smoking forever.

If you don’t use tobacco, but know someone who does:

  1. Continue to give emotional support by reminding them it can take multiple attempts to quit.
  2. Make sure they know about the free Quitline services available.
  3. Keep yourself safe by avoiding secondhand smoke.

For more ideas, contact Tessa Willie at Helping Services, 563-387-1720.


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