According to the Center for Disease Control, the number of adult smokers in America continues to drop, from 20.9 percent in 2005 to 15.5 percent in 2016. That is around 38 million smokers.
In Mississippi, the percent of smokers is above the national average, with 22 percent of adults smoking, according to Mississippi Tobacco Free. What’s more 7.2 percent of high school students smoke, 11.5 percent of them vape, which is inhaling and exhaling a nicotine aerosol, often referred to as vapor, from an e-cigarette or vaping device. Four-point-nine percent of adult Mississippians vape.
According to Amy Winter, director of the Office of Tobacco Control for Mississippi Tobacco Free, there are several ways to quit smoking, and each have their own success rates.
The Mississippi Tobacco Quitline (1-800-QUITNOW) is available has about a 40 percent success rate.
“This is one of the highest rates in the nation,” Winter said.
Also, by talking to your healthcare provider about assistance with quitting smoking, there are medications available -- Chantix (varenicline tartrate) and Zyban (bupropion hydrochloride), Nicotrol oral inhaler, Nicotrol nasal spray – and over-the-counter medication like nicotine replacement therapy to aid in your battle to quit. Counseling is also an option.
According to Winter, these double the likelihood of being successful in your success to quit.
“E-cigarettes are not an FDA-approved cessation aid,” Winter said. “There is much we still do not know about e-cigarettes.”
Winters said the Mississippi Tobacco Quitline can provide tips for successful cessation.
“Talk to an addiction counselor by calling 1-800-QUITNOW,” Winter said. “They will work with you to individualize a quit plan. Medications and counseling double the likelihood of quitting success.”
The Office of Tobacco Control works with partners across the state to prevent youth tobacco use, increase the number of adults who quit, decrease secondhand smoke exposure, and reduce tobacco-related disparities.
Winter said, “We fund tobacco-free coalitions in each county to work with concerned citizens to reduce secondhand smoke exposure and tobacco use. Through local coalition advocacy efforts, over 150 communities have passed smoke-free ordinances. Coalitions educate teachers, parents, community leaders, and policy makers about the dangers of all tobacco products, including Juul.”
The organization also funds the Partnership for a Healthy Mississippi to work with our coalitions to educate community leaders, school officials, and parents about the dangers of tobacco for youth