Quitters Wanted

Let’s quit together! Quitting smoking is a process that sometimes takes many attempts before succeeding. The important thing is to learn from each quit attempt until one can quit for good. One should know tobacco dependence is a chronic condition, and research literature suggests that the average person who uses tobacco products makes five to seven quit attempts before becoming completely abstinent. The journey to becoming a non-smoker doesn’t have to be a lonely one for Shelby county residents.
The use of tobacco products can cause diseases such as cancer, heart disease, chronic respiratory diseases, and premature births. Smoking causes more than 440,000 deaths each year. According to the American Lung Association, 90% of male lung cancer patients develop their disease because of smoking, and female smokers are 13 times more likely to develop lung cancer than those who have never smoked. Tennessee reports the fourth highest incidence rate of lung cancer. To reduce these astonishing statistics, Shelby County Health Department’s Tobacco Prevention Program offers free cessation classes via the Freedom from Smoking program to Shelby county residents who are looking to become tobacco free.
Freedom from Smoking is an evidence-based smoking cessation program offering a systematic approach to quitting smoking that focuses on behavior change. Instead of concentrating on the negative effects of smoking, Freedom from Smoking highlights the positive effects of quitting smoking, including improved health and lifestyle. Participants in Freedom from Smoking attend eight community-based sessions within seven weeks. All class materials are provided in the first class with no charge to the participant.
Participants who have completed Freedom from Smoking have called the program helpful, and some even have stated they could not have found the will power to quit without the program and group sessions. Facilitators help participants understand that smoking is a learned behavior, and the first step to breaking the habit is to prepare for a lifestyle change.

Making the decision to quit tobacco use is not easy, but it does not have to be done alone. Join the Freedom from Smoking program with Shelby County Health Department and let’s quit together. If interested or know someone who could benefit from the Freedom from Smoking program please contact Courtney Tipper at 901-222-9274 or e-mail her at Courtney.tipper@shelbycountytn.gov.


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