smoking-web.jpgTALLAHASSEE – As 2012 came to a close, many smokers and their loved ones resolved to quit tobacco for good. For them, the Florida Department of Health (DOH) says it is offering proven quit resources.

The department’s Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida is encouraging tobacco users to create a comprehensive quit plan with the help of the Florida Quitline, Web Coach or Area Health Education Centers’ in-person services. 

For those who use tobacco, the most important step to take for a healthier and longer life is to quit, and a quit plan is the first step for a successful quit attempt, officials say, adding that tobacco users who quit can double their chances at success by using the state’s free and convenient quit services.

Tobacco Free Florida’s resources include consultation from a certified and trained Quit Coach, as well as FDA-approved nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), when appropriate. This combined approach of counseling and NRT can double or triple a tobacco user’s chance of quitting, officials say.

Tobacco Free Florida offers three ways to quit:

Call: Call the Florida Quitline at 1-877-U-CAN-NOW to speak with a Quit Coach who will help assess one’s addiction and help create a personalized quit plan.

Click: Enroll in the Web Coach, which will help create an individualized web-based quit plan. Visit quitnow.net/florida

Come in: Visit the Florida Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) Network’s website,  ahectobacco.com, to locate a local AHEC and sign up for Quit Smoking Now group classes.

Seven of 10 adult smokers report that they want to quit completely, the officials say, and those who have tried to quit but relapsed in the past should try again because most former smokers made several attempts before quitting permanently. Quitting tobacco is hard, but it is not impossible, they say, adding that there are more former smokers than current smokers in the state, but not having a plan can make quitting more difficult.

“If you are resolving to quit tobacco for the New Year, there are resources available to help you,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “Counseling and medication are very effective and greatly increase your chances of quitting and staying tobacco free for good.”

For more information on these quit services and other tips to quit or help someone quit, visit tobaccofreeflorida.com