Controllable Risk Factors:Tobacco Use/Smoking

Among other things, smoking damages blood vessel walls, speeds up the clogging of arteries, raises blood pressure and makes the heart work harder. Smoking also doubles the risk of stroke. It reduces the amount of oxygen in the blood, causing the heart to work harder and allowing blood clots to form more easily. Smoking also increases the amount of build-up in the arteries, which may block the flow of blood to the brain, causing a stroke. The good news is that smoking-induced strokes and overall stroke risk can greatly reduced by quitting smoking. Here are a few tips to help you quit.

Tips to quit smoking:

•Set a “Quit Date.” Mark calendars at home and at work.

•Tell family, friends and co-workers about the plan to quit. Ask for their support.

•Ask a doctor about nicotine replacement therapy or medication that can help control the urges to smoke.

•Throw away all cigarettes, ashtrays, lighters and matches before the “Quit Date”.

•Reward yourself for doing well. Buy something nice with the money saved on cigarettes.

The Health Education Center at Little Company of Mary Hospital offers a very effective Hypnosis for Smoking Cessation Program. The program includes a 1 ½ hour group hypnosis program and a take home CD that reinforces the hypnosis whenever and as often as the individual requires. For more information and to register for this smoking cessation program call 708 423-5774

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