Tina Bennett teaching a "Freedom from Smoking" class.

ALTON – If you are ready to kick the smoking habit permanently, help is available through an upcoming American Lung Association smoking cessation program hosted by OSF Saint Anthony’s Health Center. “Freedom from Smoking” starts with an orientation session on Monday, April 18, at 6 p.m. in the Auditorium of OSF Saint Clare’s Medical Office Building, 815 East Fifth Street.

Get The Latest News!

Don't miss our top stories and need-to-know news everyday in your inbox.

“If someone wants to know how to quit, then this is the program to turn to,” says Tina Bennett, a trained smoking cessation facilitator at OSF Saint Anthony’s. “We follow the American Lung Association’s step-by-step process that includes information about quitting, recovery and support, stress management, weight control and relapse prevention.”

Bennett said participants receive free pulmonary function screenings to measure lung capacity. “Once a person stops smoking, they typically see a decrease in coughing and shortness of breath.”

Article continues after sponsor message

Participants in the Freedom from Smoking program learn more about the effects of smoking, plus review their own personal commitment and readiness to quit smoking and reduce the hesitation towards quitting.

“Participants adjust to a new life that does not involve smoking,” says Bennett. “They learn how to handle cravings through various coping strategies.”

Benefits of smoking cessation, from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, include:

  • 20 minutes after quitting: Your heart rate drops to a normal level.
  • 12 hours after quitting: The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal.
  • Two weeks to three months after quitting: Your risk of a having a heart attack begins to drop; your lung function begins to improve.
  • One to nine months after quitting: Your coughing and shortness of breath decrease.
  • One year after quitting: Your added risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker’s risk.
  • Five to 15 years after quitting: Your risk of having a stroke is reduced to that of a nonsmoker’s; your risk of getting cancer of the mouth, throat or esophagus is half that of a smoker.
  • 10 years after quitting: Your risk of dying from lung cancer is about half that of a smoker’s; your risk of getting bladder cancer is half that of a smoker’s; your risk of getting cervical cancer or cancer of the larynx, kidney or pancreas decreases.
  • 15 years after quitting: Your risk of coronary heart disease is the same as that of a nonsmoker.

To register or for more information about the eight-week Freedom from Smoking program, please visit Classes & Events at www.saintanthonys.org, or call 618-465-2264.

More like this:

May 12, 2024 - Durbin Calls On FDA, DOJ Officials, To Testify About Lack Of Enforcement Of Unauthorized E-Cigs

Apr 12, 2024 - Durbin Calls FDA and DOJ Officials To Receive Briefing Of Lack Of Enforcement Of E-Cigarettes

Mar 25, 2024 - Toby Keith's Death Because Of Stomach Cancer Opens Concerns For Others

Mar 9, 2024 - For Your Health – What To Know About Young Adult Colorectal Cancer

Jan 15, 2024 - Durbin, Duckworth Join Merkley, Colleagues In Call To Ban Menthol Cigarettes