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Quit with Blue on World No Tobacco Day

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Quitting smoking can be challenging, but did you know that there are more former smokers than current smokers in the United States? Join the ranks of former smokers who have kicked the habit for good. We encourage all tobacco users to set a quit date for this year’s World No Tobacco Day on May 31.

Understand the risks of tobacco use

There are at least 250 known harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke, and at least 69 can cause cancer according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Smoking also causes heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and hip fractures.

5 Health Benefits of Quitting

It’s never too late to quit. Did you know that your body starts to heal almost immediately after quitting tobacco? For example:

  1. Your heart rate and blood pressure drop within 20 minutes.
  2. The level of carbon monoxide in your blood will drop to normal within 12 hours.
  3. Your circulation and lung function will improve within 3 months.
  4. You’ll breathe easier and cough less within 9 months.
  5. And after a year, your risk of heart disease is cut in half.

The benefits don’t stop there, over time, your risk for certain cancers will decrease, and your risk for certain illnesses may even return to normal. You’ll also save money by not buying cigarettes, electronic or e-cigarettes, and other tobacco products.

Quitting is a big step—but you don’t have to do it alone

Certain treatments such as counseling services, educational classes and medications for quitting are proven methods to help those who want to quit. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Service Benefit Plan offers resources to help you get ready for the big day. Start with the following steps to Quit with Blue.

  1. See where you stand. Take some time to think about how smoking has affected your life and why you want to quit.

  2. Put a quit plan together. Start the Quit Tobacco Goal with the Online Health Coach and create a quit plan.

  3. Use your incentive. If you complete step 2, you may be eligible for the Tobacco Cessation Incentive Program. You can receive smoking and tobacco cessation medications at no cost to you through this program. Be sure to talk to your doctor about your medication options. 

Last updated: April 23, 2020

Published on: May 14, 2014