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Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans’ Hospital


Kick the Tobacco Habit with Truman VA

Image; calendar with a hand circling a date

Pick a quit day and kick your tobacco habit

By the Health Promotion/Disease Prevention Program.
Monday, November 12, 2018

Seventy percent of Veterans who use tobacco would like to quit. However, many doubt they can because of previous unsuccessful attempts. However, those of us with Truman VA’s Tobacco Cessation Program want to say, “don’t lose hope!” Quitting tobacco is the single most important thing you can do for a healthier life.

November is a great month to kick the tobacco habit. On Thursday, Nov. 15, many people will quit tobacco for a day as part of the American Cancer Society’s “Great American Smokeout.” As a result, many will choose to quit for good.

Here are some tips to help you quit tobacco:

  • Pick a “quit day,” and tell your friends and family members. Ask for their support and encouragement. The Great American Smokeout on Nov. 15, would be a great quit day!
  • Write down your reasons for quitting, to include: better breathing, saving money, smelling better, improved sleep, lower risk for serious health problems, and no longer feeling controlled by tobacco.
  • Pay attention to where, why and when you use tobacco to better understand your triggers. Think of things you can do differently, or substitutes you can use to get through these triggers.
  • Purchase only enough tobacco to get you to your quit day. Gather up any stray packs/tins or ‘loosies’ that may tempt you if found after quit day. Throw away any remaining tobacco on quit day. If tobacco is not close by, it will be easier to get through urges.
  • Know that the urge to use tobacco will pass in three to five minutes. To get through urges, use “The 4 D’s” – Delay, Drink Water, take a Deep Breath, and Distract (focus on an activity or thoughts that are unrelated to tobacco).
  • Put together your “Quitting Toolbox.” This could include healthy substitutes like toothpicks, low calorie/sugar-free snacks, cinnamon sticks, games to keep your hands busy, and crossword puzzles.

On Quit Day:

  • Remind friends and family this is your quit day.
  • Avoid situations where you will be tempted to use tobacco.
  • Reward yourself with a treat or something special (use the money you would have spent on tobacco).
  • Practice the 4 D’s!
  • Remind yourself that you CAN DO THIS!

Come Meet the Tobacco Cessation Team on Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018!

The Tobacco Cessation Team will be in the VA lobby for the Great American Smokeout from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15. We will have information about the VA Tobacco Cessation Program and other helpful handouts to help you quit.

Why not try to quit for this one day? It could be the start of a new and healthier you!

For more information:


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