Smokers Try to Kick Habit Friday
The American Cancer Society and the University of Missouri Respiratory Therapy Program said support groups and self-help materials increase the chance of stopping smoking.
"I think everyone knows the dangers of smoking and they want to quit, but then you have to look at the people actively trying to quit and I appreciate those people trying. It can be very stressful, especially at this time of the year also," said Dana Evans of MU's Respiratory Therapy Program.
The American Cancer Society said a smoker's heart rate and blood pressure drop just 20 minutes after quitting, and the risk for heart disease is cut in half one year after quitting. Ten years after quitting, the lung cancer death rate is about half that of a smoker.
"It's not just beneficial for you to quit smoking, it's also beneficial to those around you because second-hand smoke is extremely dangerous," said Evans.
Despite repeated warnings from several U.S. Surgeons General in the past 40 years, smoking is still one of the leading causes of death in this country and one out of every five people smokes.