Cigarette smokers, have you ever thought of quitting smoking, even for just one day?
Well, this Thursday, Nov. 21, is your chance to join thousands of other smokers around the country who are also attempting to quit smoking during the Great American Smokeout.
The American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout challenges individuals to quit smoking for 24 hours.
According to nationaltoday.com, the Great American Smokeout stems from a 1970 event in Randolph, Mass., when high school guidance counselor Arthur P. Mullaney asked smokers to give up cigarettes for one day and to donate the money they would have spent on buying cigarettes to a high school scholarship fund.
Coming from a family with one parent who smoked, I know firsthand how hard it is to quit smoking and the effects smoking can have on loved ones in a family.
Smoking not only can cause health issues for the smoker, but secondhand smoke can be just as serious and deadly for babies, children and those with asthma.
The American Cancer Society says more than 34 million Americans still smoke, and smoking remains the single largest preventable cause of death and illness in the world.
Smoking causes an estimated 480,000 deaths every year, or about one in five deaths.
Quitting smoking is not easy, but it can be done.
There are several benefits to quitting smoking, including:
• Reducing the risk of heart and lung diseases and other health issues;
• Improved breathing;
• Increased blood circulation throughout the body;
• Improved sense of smell and taste;
• Fresher breath, hair and clothes that do not smell of smoke;
• Less stained teeth;
• Improved skin appearance; and
• Increased spending money.
I urge all smokers to take this opportunity to improve their health and participate in the Great American Smokeout.
Smoking can and does kill.