LISBON - Circle the date on your calendar, Nov. 15.
She quit smoking. She began to feel something in her throat that wouldn't go away. She couldn't swallow it. She couldn't cough it out. She quit smoking several weeks ago. Last week she learned she has cervical cancer.
Another young woman wanted to conceive, to have a baby, a child borne of the love between her and her husband. She had a difficult time getting pregnant. Then she spontaneously miscarried. She is a smoker.
People are masters at denial. "It won't happen to me. It happens only to other people."
People are great at making excuses. "I can't quit smoking now. There's just so much going on. So much stress in my life."
"I'm going to quit smoking. I'm cutting back a little at a time." "I didn't smoke for years, but the temptation-and the stress-were too much to overcome."
And little children watch their parents and think, perhaps say, "Mommy, when I grow up I'm going to smoke just like you."
This article is designed to promote awareness:
1.) Smoking causes cancer. (Just think about all of the chemicals tobacco products contain!) And cancer still kills.
2.) Smoking is connected to preventing conception and miscarriage.
3.) Women suffer lung cancer as much as men do. (Lung cancer is one of the most, if not the most painful cancer of all.)
4.) You have plenty of time to plan to quit smoking on Great American Smoke-out day, Nov. 15. This year is the 37th observation of the American Cancer Society's annual event.
So, say you spend $7 on one pack of smokes. You smoke a pack a day. That's about $50 a week, about $2,600 a year. You could take a nice vacation, pay your overdue utility bills, or just tuck it away for a rainy day. Who wouldn't like to do that? Over 10 years, that's $26,000!
The CDC reports 19.3 percent of adults smoke. Of those, 21.5 percent are male, 17.3 percent, female. That's one out of five people.
"Smoking is a major cause ofheart disease, aneurysms, bronchitis, emphysema and stroke.
"Using tobacco can damage a woman's reproductive health and hurt babies. Tobacco use is linked with reduced fertility and a higher risk of miscarriage, early delivery (premature birth) and stillbirth. It is also a cause of low birth-weight in infants. It has been linked to a higher risk for birth defects and sudden infant death syndrome" says ACS.
The Great American Smokeout is Nov. 15. We hope you will begin now to make your plans to quit smoking and give yourself a better chance to live longer without the risks associated with smoking.
As this article was being written, drugfree.org shared published reports regarding last year. "The smoking rate dropped most sharply among teens, poor people and those who are dependent on government health insurance." The headline attributes the drop to the increased tobacco tax that went into effect April 1, 2009.
Family Recovery Center promotes the well being of individuals, families and communities with education, prevention and treatment programs for substance abuse and other mental health issues. For more information, contact us at 964 N. Market St., Lisbon; phone, 330-424-1468; or e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.