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Each year, on the 3rd Thursday of November, the American Cancer Society hosts a smoking initiative called the GREAT AMERICAN SMOKEOUT. Quitting smoking or vaping is the single most important step a person can take to improve the length and quality of their life. Stopping smoking can be tough, but smokers don’t have to quit alone. There are many options to help smokers quit smoking for good, including a free Smoking Cessation class education series provided by Valor Health in Emmett.

Cigarette smoking harms nearly every organ of the body, causes many diseases, and reduces the health of smokers in general. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, quitting smoking lowers your risk for smoking-related diseases and can add years to your life. Not only are one in five deaths caused by cigarette smoking, it causes more deaths each year than the following causes combined: human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) Illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, and firearm-related incidents.

Quitting smoking significantly reduces cardiovascular risks. Just 1 year after quitting smoking, your risk for a heart attack drops sharply. Within 2 to 5 years after quitting smoking, your risk for stroke could fall to about the same as a nonsmoker’s. If you quit smoking, your risks for cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, and bladder drop by half within 5 years. Ten years after you quit smoking, your risk for lung cancer drops by half.

If you are ready to quit, or just want to learn more information, we are here for you! Registration is now open for this free 5-class series scheduled Oct. 14, 5:30-7:30 p.m.; Oct. 21, 5:30-7:30 p.m.; Oct. 23, 10 — 11 a.m.; Oct. 28, 5:30-7:30 p.m., and Nov. 4, 5:30-7:30 p.m. The classes are taught by tobacco education specialist, Jacki Ginter, Certified Smoking Cessation Instructor and Respiratory Therapist at Valor Health.

Classes are free! To register speak to your provider or call Jacki Ginter at (208) 901-3439.

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