(Porter County, IN) – In celebration of the American Cancer Society’s 48th Great American Smokeout on Nov. 16, Hoosiers across Indiana are encouraged to “make the commitment and quit smoking today”.

“With the holidays just around the corner, it’s a great time for people to give the ‘gift’ of a better life to themselves and to their family and friends by quitting. With fewer places to smoke in Indiana, now is the perfect time to quit,” said Carrie Higgins, Program Director of The Tobacco
Education and Prevention Coalition for Porter County.

Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of early death and disease in the United States and leads to over 11,000 deaths annually in Indiana, according to the Tobacco Education and Prevention Coalition for Porter County. Indiana’s rate of adult smoking rate and use of e-cigarettes remain higher that the national average, according to the coalition. For any smokers in Indiana who want to quit, including those that vape e-cigarettes, help is available and there’s no better time to quit than now, according to Higgins.

The free Indiana Tobacco Quitline – 1-800-QUIT-NOW – is available seven days a week, 365 days a year to provide tips and counseling on how to quit for any Indiana resident.

“The Quitline is staffed with professional ‘quit’ coaches, who are trained on helping people to quit using tobacco, as well as free Nicotine Replacement Therapy for many adults. It’s a free resource and it’s a great first step in treating what we know is a difficult addiction to overcome,”
added Higgins.

“Giving up smoking is a journey, and it can be hard, but you can increase your chances of success with a good plan and support. Success may look different for different people,” the Tobacco Education and Prevention Coalition for Porter County stated in a press release. “There are many ways to quit smoking, and some work better than others. Getting help through counseling and medications doubles or even triples your chances of quitting successfully.”

“It may be surprising to most people that the effects of stopping smoking are almost immediate; a person’s heart rate and blood pressure drop just 20 minutes after quitting,” explained Higgins.

According to Higgins, quitting smoking is critical to improving one’s life at a time when tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the world.