Recently, a new law banning smoking on all college campuses throughout Pennsylvania caused a lot of criticism and praise from an assortment of sources.One prominent solution to this problem for smokers is to pursue the admirable goal of tobacco cessation. Although, no doubt difficult, tobacco cessation is something that students in the West Chester University community can achieve by using various resources.
These include the Student Health and Wellness Center and the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s Determined to Quit Program. Another notable program is the The Great American Smokeout Challenge, a program run by the American Cancer Society.
If one acquires a nicotine- free lifestyle, then a noticeable difference can occur in life, and the lives of others around oneself. The goal of the Great American Smokeout Challenge is to allow one to obtain this nicotine free lifestyle, which is so essential to a healthy life.
Through the Challenge’s Quitline system, a counselor will contact the smoker to help them create a quit plan and tell one about the resources available. Through the Web site and the Quitline system, tips and information will be given about withdrawal and other issues related to tobacco cessation.
These include ways to avoid cigarettes when one decides to quit and how deal with a craving when it occurs.
Quitting is difficult, but the Health and Wellness Center can assist in making a plan that eases the process. First, consider personal reasons for quitting, the cost and benefits of smoking versus not smoking, and how the behavior affects others around.
Changing every day behaviors is essential, for example, creating an artificial ‘no smoke zone,’ such as one’s home or workplace, is often helpful. Creating a support system will help one through those tough times when all one wants to do is smoke.
Support systems will be one’s cheerleaders along the way. Find friends or family to quit with, or have already succeeded in creating a tobacco free lifestyle. Also, smoking tobacco can be very expensive, just take five minutes to calculate how much you think you spend a week on nicotine products, the result may be surprising.
At the Health and Wellness Center, nicotine replacement therapies are available. Call the Health Center at 610-436-2509 to talk with a provider to decide if nicotine replacement therapies would be right for one.
On Thursday, Nov. 20, peer educators from the Health and Wellness Center will be distributing information and resources related to tobacco cessation throughout campus.
As members of the WCU society we have a responsibility to ourselves and others to remain as healthy as possible. With all of the resources available to West Chester students, tobacco cessation is possible. The Great American Smokeout challenge is a great way to start the path to true health and wellness. Another option to start on the path to tobacco cessation is to make an appointment at the Health and Wellness Center to develop a quit plan.
The decision to begin tobacco cessation is an admirable goal that can not occur without support, which is readily available in this community. Through planning ahead, and discretionary nicotine replacement therapy, the road to a healthy standard of living can be achieved through, support, determination, and a will to try over and over again, to be tobacco free.
For More Information Visit: http://www.cancer.org/docroot/subsite/greatamericans/smokeout.asp, or The Student Health and Wellness Center, located on the second floor of Wayne Hall, website: www.wcupa.edu/wellness
Spencer Wright is a peer educator at West Chester University.