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Alabama Pharmacists Want to Help You Quit Smoking

Monday, March 5, 2018  
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Alabama Pharmacists Want to Help You Quit Smoking

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 5, 2018

MONTGOMERY – It is estimated that 22.5 percent of adults in Alabama currently smoke, and approximately 9,300 children under the age of 18 become new daily smokers each year. Smoking can be a major contributing factor to many diseases and health problems including heart disease, lung disease, and cancer. The Alabama Pharmacy Association (APA) would like to remind everyone that pharmacists can be a valuable resource to Alabama residents when it comes to smoking cessation.

 

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States and in Alabama, and although progress has been made in recent years to increase awareness about the dangers of tobacco use, there is still more to be accomplished. Pharmacists are some of the most accessible members of the healthcare team. Many pharmacists are trained in smoking cessation counseling and are ready and eager to help you and your family members take the first steps to quit smoking.

 

One of the first steps is a willingness and motivation to try. For some patients the motivation is a grandchild that lives in their home. For others, the motivation may be to decrease the amount of time they are at the doctor’s office or in the hospital. Even still, for others the motivation may be an increase in their energy level to be able to play outside with their dogs, or just to enjoy life more.

 

There are numerous benefits to stopping smoking including: decreased risk for many types of cancers including lung cancer, decreased risk for heart disease and stroke, decreased symptoms such as coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath, and decreased risk of developing lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).  

 

Below are some proven, effective tools that can help you be successful in your attempt to quit smoking:

  • Counseling (either one-on-one counseling or group counseling). Pharmacists can be a valuable resources in conducting an individual counseling session with you or identifying other counseling services available to you.
  • Nicotine Replacement Products (NRTs) – examples of these include nicotine gum, nicotine lozenges, and nicotine patches. These products help to decrease cravings while you are trying to quit. These are available over the counter at your pharmacy, and your pharmacist can help you select which product would be right for you.
  • Prescription medications such as Wellbutrin (bupropion) or Chantix (varenicline).

Speak to your pharmacist about the ways he or she can help you start down the path to a smoke-free life. There are other valuable resources available to you, as well. Alabama residents can visit quitnowalabama.com or call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for additional, free help.

 

The Alabama Pharmacy Association is a nonprofit professional organization with over 2,500 members statewide. The APA offers continuing education programs for pharmacists and technicians, and members take a leading role in lobbying for pharmacy at the state and national level. Established in 1881, APA is the oldest professional organization for pharmacy in Alabama. APA members represent all practices of pharmacy and are committed to their profession and their patients.

 

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