Health center to help students kick the habit

The SHSU Health Center will be participating in the nationwide Great American Smokeout on Thursday, Nov. 20 in the LSC mall area from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. For the past 26 years, the American Cancer Society has been urging people to smoke less or quit for the day on the third Thursday of November.

Health center director Keith Lott said, “we like to be involved in any event where we can help promote healthy behaviors for our students.” The health center and Peer Education office here at SHSU will work together to challenge students to stop smoking by educating them on the dangers involved.

Sophomore Biology major Erin Ortiz is the peer educator in charge of the Great American Smokeout. “We will be having giveaways and a door prize for anyone who walks by,” said Ortiz. There will also be plenty of brochures and information on the dangers of smoking and how to quit.

For any smokers who think they are not at harm, there will be free carbon monoxide screenings for everyone. The test can monitor the amount of carbon monoxide in a person’s lungs. This information will give students an idea of the amount of harm they are doing to their body.

According to the American Cancer Society, nearly 47 million adults in the United States smoke, and approximately half of them will die prematurely from it. The economic costs involved with smoking are estimated at $3,391 per year for a smoker.

Mark Twain said, “Quitting smoking is easy. I’ve done it a thousand times.” There are ways to be more successful than Mr. Twain. Students who would like to quit smoking do not have to fight the battle alone.

SHSU has an on-going program for students who would like help with quitting smoking. The program is four weeks long with a one-hour meeting once a week. The idea is to convince students to quit through education, techniques and support.

According to the American Cancer Society, “Smoking cessation (stopping smoking) represents the single most important step that smokers can take to enhance the length and quality of their lives.”

For more information about the Great American Smokeout, call the Health Center at 294-1805, or visit

Leave a Reply