The adult smoking rate edged down in the last six years, but a lot of adults are still lighting up.According to data published at www.countyhealthrankings.org, the overall adult smoking rate in Lincoln County has dropped from 19% in 2011 to 17% today.
George Haws, Lincoln County’s primary anti-smoking advocate, said that’s good news and bad news, as he cited a list of health problems the stem from smoking.
“Start with bad breath and inability to taste your food, and move right on to higher risks of erectile dysfunction,” Haws said.
Haws said it has been known for over 50 years, that smoking causes lung cancer. The CDC reports that smokers are also at greater risk for cancers of the throat, stomach, liver, pancreas, kidney, bladder, colon and rectum.
Smokers get sick more often and have a harder time recovering from surgery and illness.
Some decide the costs and risks are too great, and decide it’s time to quit, which takes an entire mental shift.
Haws said local groups can help.
Great Plains Health has free classes. Call (308) 568-7530.
Free coaching and counseling are available by calling the Nebraska Quit Line at (800) QUIT NOW. The Quit Line also provides free nicotine replacement products to those who qualify.
Community Connections - Tobacco Free Lincoln County is a local group that is funded by Tobacco Free Nebraska, through the Nebraska Health& Human Services.
They provide information about tobacco and secondhand smoke, and quitting and can be reached at www.CommunityConnectionsLC.org or 696-3356.