To the editor,
This year smoking will kill 1,700 Nova Scotians and roughly 45,000 Canadians.
Smoking increases the risks of a wide range of health problems such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, kidney cancer and throat cancers. Smoking is the cause of most cases of lung cancer and is the primary cause of other lung problems such as chronic bronchitis.
Quitting smoking is the perfect New Year’s resolution and National Non-Smoking Week (Jan. 19-25) has support and resources to help you quit. The 2014 theme is “truth in advertising”; understanding the false claims of tobacco companies and the consequences of smoking.
The first step: talk to your doctor. There are many options to ease the process of quitting that they can tailor to your needs. Even if you’ve tried quitting before, your doctor can help identify problems and plan the next attempt. Quitting is a trial-and-error process and every step towards being smoke-free is an accomplishment.
Quitting reduces your chances of stroke, heart attack, lung cancer, other cancers and other lung diseases. You’ll feel physically and mentally healthier after quitting. The cost of tobacco will be eliminated from your budget and that money will go right back into your pocket.
Most importantly, quitting will protect your loved ones from second-hand smoke, which kills 200 Nova Scotians every year.
Tobacco use is the number one preventable cause of death in our province. Make this year the year you quit. For more information and resources to help you quit, visit www.doctorsns.com.
Mike Fleming, BSc, MD, CCFP, FCFP
President , Doctors Nova Scotia