Golden West Weight Loss
Tucson, Arizona
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Tid Bits: Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), a natural substance that is reputed to stimulate the same reaction in the body as falling in love.
Smoking Cessation

Imagine: Two jumbo jets crash every day and not a single person walks away alive. That, then-Surgeon General C. Everett Coop told Americans in 1989, is the number of people who die each day from smoking.

Smoking Deaths Chart

Cigarettes alone kill more than 400,000 Americans each year--more than AIDS, alcohol, car accidents, murders, suicides, illegal drugs, and fires combined. And smoking can harm not just the smoker, according to the Environmental Protection Agency and other experts, but also family members and others who breathe "secondhand smoke."

Given that cigarettes are known killers, why do so many Americans continue to smoke?

Seventy percent of adult smokers want to quit completely, according to a survey by the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But the nicotine in cigarettes is an addictive drug that makes quitting difficult, as confirmed by the 1988 Surgeon General's report on smoking and health.

More Smoking Facts and Statistics

Given that cigarettes are known killers, why do so many Americans continue to smoke?

Smoking Cessation Programs/Styles/Methods

In the past smokers have not had much help beyond sheer will power when trying to quit smoking. In recent years several products have become available to help smokers quit. Some are better than others and some have not been shown to be effective at all. As always different people respond better to some methods than others. We work closely with our patients to help determine the most effective course of action. We have listed a few of the techniques below for your consideration:

  • Chantix
         Chantix, the first new prescription medication approved for smoking cessation in nearly a decade, received priority review designation by the FDA because of its potential to be a significant therapeutic advance over existing therapies. Addiction to nicotine is a chronic medical condition that makes quitting smoking difficult; Chantix is a breakthrough treatment specifically developed to block nicotine's effect in the brain. Chantix (1 mg twice daily) nearly doubles the likelihood of quitting versus Zyban® (150 mg twice daily) and nearly quadruples the likelihood over placebo.   More Info

  • Zyban
         More support is available in the form of a new prescription anti-depressant designed to curb the cravings and withdrawal symptoms that make it difficult for many people to quit smoking. Zyban is a slow-release form of Wellbutrin, an anti-depressant that works on two brain chemicals, dopamine and norepinephrine.
    Zyban Logo      It is especially helpful for nicotine-dependent people who feel irritable, anxious, moody and on edge when they are trying to quit. Scientists hunting for smoking cures stumbled onto the fact that patients under treatment for depression frequently quit smoking while taking Wellbutrin, one of the newer anti-depressants approved several years ago. Studies show the drug is especially helpful when used in conjunction with nicotine replacement patches, gum or nasal spray. Long-term follow-up rates are not available on Zyban.   More Info

  • Nicotine patches and nicotine gum
         In late 1996, nicotine-replacement patches and gum went over the counter, making them easy to purchase. Some 20 percent to 25 percent of nicotine gum and patch users quit smoking for at least one year, with the new inhaler expected to improve that rate.

  • Smokeless nicotine inhaler
         The smokeless nicotine inhaler, which is available by prescription, should help some hard-core smokers who are addicted to nicotine but also miss the "feel" of puffing on a cigarette when trying to quit. The plastic inhaler allows users to suck in a little nicotine, without the smoke that contains dangerous tars and toxins. The inhalers even cause a little burning sensation at the back of the throat for smokers who are really into the feel of smoking.

    No Smokes
  • Doctor's orders
         Researchers reviewing 188 studies of attempted smoking cessation concluded that simple, direct advice to quit smoking is a cost-effective way for doctors to help cure their patients -- especially pregnant women and people with heart disease. Support groups: Quit-smoking clinics are widely available with long-term support groups through the American Cancer Society.

  • Computerized behavior modification
         LifeSign, a new hand-held mini computer designed to help people change their smoking behavior, has been developed under funding from the National Cancer Institute and is now available by mail for $89.95. For seven days, the smoker presses a button each time he or she lights up. The computer then analyzes the information and begins beeping the smoker to tell him or her when to light up during the next 14 to 28 days. "It has you smoking at different times than you are used to, and gradually phases you out altogether," explains Kyle Horgan, a marketing agent for Personal Improvement Computer Systems (PICS), the company that developed the system. The success rate, short term, has been as high as 80 percent, Horgan says. For more information, call PICS at (800) 543-3744

  • Hypnosis

    Hypnosis remains unproven.

  • Acupuncture

    Most studies have concluded that acupunture is ineffective against smoking.

What can be expected

Here is a great chart of the benefits of stopping smoking. A 'must read' for those who want to know how much their health will improve.

Links to other sites:

The links below should provide additional helpful information. All will open in a new window.

CDC - Tobacco Information and Prevention Source

American Cancer Society Smoking Cessation Main Page

American Lung Association

Good Article from FDA

Pro's and Cons of various treatments

If you do not find the answers you need here - please call us. We always welcome and encourage questions from our patients.

Your feedback and suggestions are always welcome:

Sunday, July 21, 2024