Wednesday, December 13th, 2017

Smoking cessation course offered at Parkview

Posted: Friday, May 26, 2017

Quitting smoking is tough. Scientists, doctors and smokers agree that it takes extraordinary effort to break the addiction to nicotine. Many smokers try to quit multiple times before they’re finally able to succeed. But support and resources can make all the difference.

Shelby Sheets, RN, cardiopulmonary rehab coordinator, Parkview Huntington Hospital, understands the struggle. An ex-smoker herself, she is the facilitator of the Freedom From Smoking® course the hospital launched earlier this year as a wellness service. And she is proud of the three new non-smokers who emerged from the initial course, which ended this month.

“They did great,” she says, smiling. “I was so excited when they all showed up for the second session! It was brave, because quitting smoking can be just as difficult as kicking a heroin or cocaine habit. Two of the five people who signed up decided this wasn’t the right time for them. But three stayed and did the work, and told me they were glad they did.”

In the informal 90-minute meetings, the group members shared their experiences, discussed challenges of the previous week, completed activities in the American Lung Association’s workbook, and enjoyed a snack together.

“I encouraged group members to reach out to each other for added support,” says Sheets. “There is no easy way out, and no way to dodge the discomfort. You have to go straight through the fire to get to the other side, and that’s recovery. I told them, ‘You’ll be uncomfortable, but you won’t be going through it alone; you have the group, and I’m here for you. And what you’ll gain is so worth the effort.’”

To help the course graduates stay on track to a healthier life, the hospital’s Adult Fitness Center provided a free one-month membership for each person.

“We wanted to reward and encourage them to stay on this new, better path to wellness that they’ve chosen,” says Holly Sale, director, Rehabilitation and Wellness, Parkview Huntington Hospital.

You may register now for the June - July Freedom from Smoking course. The course begins on Monday, June 5, (first of eight sessions) 6 to 7:30 p.m. Parkview Huntington Hospital Administrative Conference Room, 2001 Stults Road.

Eight sessions over seven weeks (two during quit week) will provide participants with support in beginning the process, quitting and starting life as a non-smoker. Participants explore coping strategies such as meditation, gentle stretching, exercises and more. A Freedom from Smoking workbook is included in the class fee of $50. The remaining sessions will take place on Mondays from 6 to 7:30 p.m.

To register for the event, or for more information call (260) 355-3209. Arrangements can be made for on-site courses at local companies as well.