SANATOGA PA – The seventh time’s the charm.
An average tobacco smoker tries to quit at least seven times before succeeding, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control. So during the 33rd annual Great American Smokeout today (Thursday, Nov. 20, 2008), if you’re among the Sanatogans trying to quit for an umpteenth time, take heart. The odds are in your favor.
“Now is a great time to quit smoking,” adds Pennsylvania Department of Health Acting Secretary Everette James. Smokers can use the Smokeout “as an opportunity to take the first big step, and with support and determination they can enjoy living smoke-free the next day and beyond.”
An estimated 2 million state residents are smokers.
The Great American Smokeout was started in 1976 to encourage smokers to quit for just one day. About 44 percent of the 45.3 million Americans who smoke have attempted to quit for at least one day in the past year. Information on how to quit using tobacco, and where to find cessation resources, is available through Pennsylvania’s free Quitline by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
Editor’s addendum, Jan. 8, 2009:
Watch a 29-second anti-smoking commercial that won the Pennsylvania Students Working Against Tobacco anti-smoking commercial contest in 2008. It played on MTV in the Philadelphia region. It was written and directed by Jehanzeb Dar, attending Penn State University at Abington; he also created its original music.