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    Cold Turkey Trot actively promotes Great American Smokout at Naval Hospital Bremerton

    Cold Turkey Trot actively promotes Great American Smokeout at Naval Hospital Bremerton

    Photo By Douglas Stutz | Cold Turkey Trot 5K participants take off on the fun run as part of Naval Hospital...... read more read more



    Story by Douglas Stutz 

    Naval Hospital Bremerton

    BREMERTON, Wash. - Naval Hospital Bremerton helped tobacco users get on a healthier path by holding the Cold Turkey Trot 5K fun run in conjunction with the annual Great American Smoke Out on Nov. 19, 2015.

    NHB’s Tobacco Cessation coordinator and Health Promotion and Wellness Department used the run to actively encourage those using any tobacco product – cigarettes, cigars, e-cigarettes, chew/dip – to consider the Department of Defense ‘Quit Tobacco, make everyone proud’ campaign,’ for at least that day, for just those 24 hours.

    “The purpose of taking part in the fun run, for smokers as well as non-smokers, was to help us get the word out that this is a designated command-sponsored event. This run is part of encouraging those who do smoke to consider other options such as exercising and not pick up and light that cigarette,” said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Michael Seymour, of NHB’s Health Promotion and Wellness department and event organizer.

    Quitting cold turkey can be daunting for a smoker and Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Geoffrey Sims attests it’s not the way he wants to stop smoking.

    “Three months ago I put that last pack of cigarettes down. I started smoking when I was 17 and have been using through my 14 years in the Navy. It got to be it was just time to quit. I am doing it gradually, but I’m doing it. I came out to do the 5K to support the cause, to support my command and to support myself and others in quitting,” Sims said.

    Seymour notes that exercise has been proven to improve any smoker’s chance of quitting. Just 10 minutes of moderate intensity exercise – running, walking, bicycling – can help reduce the desire to smoke or dip. Exercise can also help diminish nicotine withdrawal symptoms and help avoid a relapse.

    And that healthier path has guideposts all along the way for any smoker to follow. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Navy Marine Corps Public Health Center, and the U.S. Surgeon General, if any smoker quits right now, within 20 minutes their heart rate and blood pressure drop; within 12 hours, the carbon monoxide level in their blood drops to normal; within three months, their circulation and lung function improves; within nine months, they will cough less and breathe easier; after one year, their risk of coronary heart disease is cut in half; after five years, their risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus and bladder are cut in half; after 10 years, they are half as likely to die from lung cancer and their risk of larynx or pancreatic cancer decreases and after 15 years their risk of coronary heart disease is the same as a non-smokers.

    Vice Adm. Matthew L. Nathan, Navy surgeon general and chief, U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery shared that “recent events across the globe demonstrate that we are living in dramatic and challenging times. Around the world, Navy Medicine is ensuring the health and readiness of every Sailor, Marine and their family, and in doing so, helping to ensure we have a ready, capable force. In today’s fluid environment, our warfighters must remain vigilant and aware of dynamic threats, including those within the ranks. There is a silent killer among our men and women, and we must prevail in the fight against this enemy in order to maintain our unrivaled advantage as a global maritime force. That enemy is tobacco, and its effects are deadly. In the fight against tobacco, quitters always win.”

    Graves cites that quitting improves a person’s night vision, mental activity; decreases the need for water; increases lung capacity; decreases injuries and accidents; increases stamina; improves fine motor coordination and increases the ability to manage stress.

    “Quitting is a process that is not always easy. It requires time, patience and a desire to change. We have the tools and experience to help you succeed,” said Pat Graves, NHB’s Tobacco Cessation coordinator and Tobacco Treatment Specialist, noting that tobacco usage can also compromise the mission of any service member.

    According to Graves, tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the United States. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that each year, an estimated 443,000 people die prematurely from smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke, and another 8.6 million live with a serious illness caused by smoking. Despite these risks, approximately 46.6 million U.S. adults smoke cigarettes.

    There’s also a financial incentive in quitting to at least consider. A smoker can give themselves over a $3,000 a year raise by quitting. The average cost of cigarettes per pack in Washington is $8.39. Multiple that amount by daily use and the annual total is $3,051.

    The American Cancer Society coordinates the Great American Smoke Out every year on the third Thursday of November. From the initial event in the 1970s when smoking and secondhand smoke were commonplace, the goal remains to reach smokers across the nation to use the date and make a plan to quit, or plan in advance and then quit smoking that day.

    NHB follows the format and uses the annual event to educate, entertain and challenges people to stop using tobacco and helps people know about the many tools they can use to quit and stay quit.

    ACS research shows that smokers are most successful in kicking the habit when they have support, such as what NHB offers, “in one variety/form or another!” states Graves.

    There are telephone smoking-cessation hotlines; stop-smoking groups; online quit groups; counseling; nicotine replacement products; prescription medicine to lessen cravings; guide books; and encouragement and support from friends and family members. Using two or more of these measures are advocated to help anyone quit smoking.

    NHB Tobacco Cessation has the resources to help anyone to quit and stay quit. For an appointment with Tobacco Cessation please call: 360- 475-4818. For NHB Health Promotion programs for command or military community group please call: 360-475-4541.



    Date Taken: 11.19.2015
    Date Posted: 11.20.2015 13:52
    Story ID: 182466
    Location: BREMERTON , WA, US 

    Web Views: 165
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