Thursday, June 29th, 2017

Parkview launches smoking cessation program

Posted: Friday, January 27, 2017

Parkview Huntington Hospital is now offering a smoking cessation course to help smokers kick the habit. The American Lung Association’s (ALA) Freedom From Smoking® program is designed for individuals who are ready to quit smoking now.

According to the ALA, in any group of smokers, 40 percent aren’t ready to quit, 40 percent are thinking about quitting, and only 20 percent are truly ready to quit. The “Freedom from Smoking” program shows aspiring non-smokers how to quit for good, in a structured, supportive group setting.

“Having the support of others who know what you’re going through is essential when quitting smoking,” says Shelby Sheets, RN, cardiopulmonary rehabilitation nurse, Parkview Huntington Hospital Rehab and Wellness Center.

Sheets was inspired by her patients to attend certification training through the ALA: “Almost 95 percent of the pulmonary rehab patients I’ve worked with at Parkview Huntington have been smokers, and even though they have difficulty breathing, they can’t seem to stop smoking. I’ve had personal experience with smoking, support groups and addiction issues among people close to me, so I know how hard it is to give up something that has become a deep-seated habit.” Sheets says she wants to create a comfortable environment in which people can express what they’re going through as they break their addiction.

The course assesses each smoker’s readiness to quit and guides them through a three-part process addressing the physical, mental and social aspects of addiction. Because most people realize that smoking can be dangerous to their health, often they may want to quit, but don’t want to face withdrawal. Eight sessions over seven weeks provide support beginning the process, quitting and starting life as a non-smoker. Participants explore coping strategies such as meditation, gentle stretching, exercises and more.

Sessions will take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Mondays in the lower-level classrooms at Parkview Huntington Hospital, 2001 Stults Road. The course costs $60 per person – about the price of a carton of cigarettes – and is most effective with five to 16 participants. The hospital provides each participant with a practical “Freedom from Smoking” workbook, which is included in the class fee.

Depending on interest level in the community, the hospital may offer the program several times a year. Employers are also encouraged to arrange for the program on site for their employees. Registration is open for the first “Freedom from Smoking” course of 2017, which will likely begin in February. To register or obtain more information, call (260) 355-3209.