The toll of tobacco use is staggering; it is the single most preventable cause of death in the USA. It accounts for over 400,000 premature deaths a year and $96 billion in smoking related health care costs. Sadly, according to the CDC, smokers die an average of 14 years earlier than nonsmokers. Not only is smoking responsible for over 80% of lung cancers, it also increases your risk of developing cancer in the following areas: nasopharynx, nasal cavity and paranasal sinuses, lip, oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, pancreas, uterine, cervix,ovary, kidney, bladder, stomach, and colorectum. The risk of cancer is the same in those who smoke “light” or low-tar cigarettes as it is in those who smoke “regular” cigarettes. Smoking is also the major cause of heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, chronic bronchitis, and emphysema. People who smoke, regardless of their age live longer than people who continue to smoke.
We, at WPH are committed to the health of our community and therefore take smoking cessation very seriously. Upon admission, all of our patients are screened for a history of tobacco use. Each patient identified as a current tobacco user is offered practical assistance to quit by our many Smoking Cessation experts. This includes Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) such as a patch, if needed, as well as realistic motivational quitting tips. Additionally, each patient is given information about resources available to them once they are discharged.
For more information on quitting smoking speak to your physician or visit www.smokefree.gov.