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News > Great American Smokeout: Quitters do win
Wolf Pack promotes good health
Tech. Sgt. Celeste Spears, 8th Medical Operations Squadron, assists Senior Airman Denise Ciordano, 8th Civil Engineer Squadron, in signing a pledge to quit smoking for a day during the Great American SmokeOut event on Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, Nov. 15, 2012. The event is an effort to a smoke free Air Force and to help those who smoke, quit. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Jonathan Fowler)
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Great American Smokeout: Quitters do win

Posted 11/16/2012   Updated 11/16/2012 Email story   Print story


by Staff Sgt. Tong Duong
8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

11/16/2012 - KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- In a day there are: 24 hours; 1,440 minutes or 86,400 seconds.

This was the Great American Smokeout challenge to Wolf Pack smokers Nov. 15, 2012, to quit for one day.

Members of the 8th Medical Group handed out pamphlets and talked to Airmen about the dangers of tobacco use and the health benefits of quitting.

Due to Kunsan's remote assignment, high mission tempo and the added stress of being away from family members, some Airmen turn to smoking as a stress reliever said Capt. Patrick Ditullio, 8th Medical Support Squadron, diagnostics and therapeutics flight commander.

A nationwide event, the goal of the program is to show tobacco users the path to a smoke free life starts one day at a time. This is also in line with the Air Force's ultimate goal, to become a tobacco-free service.

According to Capt. Diane Juroska, 8th Medical Operation Squadron health promotion officer, tobacco is a leading preventable cause of death in the US, which leads to 443,000 deaths annually.

Smokers also cost the Defense Department more than $1.6 Billion annually in medical cost and lost work time.

The benefits of a smoke free Air Force can significantly increase The 8th Fighter Wing's mission readiness said Juroska.

"Not only does it increase productivity and physical endurance helping the wing take the fight North, but will decrease absenteeism due to medical related issues," she said.

Here are some of Defense Department's tips to quitting tobacco:

-Remember why you want to quit. Post a picture of someone special as a reminder and remember they are pulling for you.

-Set a quit date. To make sure you stay motivated, make it soon.

-Stick with it. Withdrawal symptoms and craving will pass if you can resist the urge to use tobacco. Remind yourself why you want to quit and the benefits you'll get from doing so.

-Prepare for challenges. Practice what you'll say when someone offers you a cigarette or dip. No sweat, right? You face much bigger challenges ever day.

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