Press Release
November 20, 2014
Press Release
Melaney Arnold – 217-558-0500
Shelia Porter – 312-814-3524

Illinois Residents Asked to Put the Tobacco Down

Support the Great American Smokeout – November 20

CHICAGO – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is asking residents to make a commitment to stop smoking today – Thursday, November 20 – in support of the Great American Smokeout. This annual health observance challenges tobacco users across the nation to quit using tobacco for one day or make a plan to quit for good.

Smoking is responsible for nearly 1 in 3 cancer deaths, and 1 in 5 deaths from all causes. Another 8.6 million people live with serious illnesses caused by smoking.

“Smoking is the number one cause of preventable death in the U.S.,” said IDPH Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck. “By quitting smoking, you lower your risk for lung cancer and other types of cancer, heart disease, stroke and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).”

The benefits of quitting are experienced immediately. Within 20 minutes of the last cigarette, a person’s blood pressure and pulse rate drop to normal and body temperature in hands and feet increase. Within nine hours of the last cigarette, the carbon monoxide level in the blood drops to normal and the oxygen level increases to normal. After going just one day without smoking, a person’s chance of a heart attack decreases.

For many, quitting can be difficult, therefore residents are encouraged to contact the Illinois Tobacco Quitline for help. Quitline staff can help cigarette, cigar and pipe smokers, as well as, snuff and chew tobacco users. Counselors provide expert advice, addiction assessment, customized quit plans, quit kits, craving support and follow up.

The Quitline is available anytime between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m., seven days a week. Call 1-866-QUIT-YES, or visit the website for help.

The Quitline is funded through IDPH and operated by the American Lung Association. This partnership was created to help people quit using tobacco. Counseling services are FREE.

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Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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