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Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
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Tobacco smoke is a toxic mixture containing 7,000 chemical compounds, many of which are poisonous and/or carcinogenic. Some of these chemicals include:

  • Arsenic (often used in pesticides and in wood preservatives
  • Carbon monoxide (found in car exhaust)
  • Ammonia (insecticide banned by most developed countries)
  • DDT (insecticide banned by most developed countries)
  • Mercury (found in thermometers and fluorescent light bulbs)
  • Butane (cigarette lighter fluid)
  • Hydrogen Cyanide (gas chamber poison)
  • Formaldehyde (embalming fluid)


No Smoking Sign

 Reasons to Quit

For your health
There are more than 7,000 chemicals in tobacco and tobacco smoke. Sixty-nine of these chemicals are known or suspected to cause cancer. Tobacco use is a major cause of cancers of the lung, larynx (voice box), oral cavity, pharynx (throat), esophagus (swallowing tube connected to the stomach), and bladder, and it contributes to the development of cancers of the pancreas, cervix, kidney, stomach, and also some leukemia. Smoking is also responsible for about 87% of lung cancer deaths. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in both men and women, and is one of the most difficult cancers to treat.

For Your Family
Cigarette smoking not only harms you as a smoker, but it also harms your loved ones, including pets, click here to find more information.

It’s Your Money
Quit to save money or to buy those things you want or need.
Click here to find out how much you can save (not including the medical expense you pay for tobacco related diseases)

It is Never Too Late

At 20 minutes after quitting
  • Blood pressure decrease
  • Pulse rate drops
  • Body temperature of hands and feet increases
At 8 hours
  • Carbon monoxide level in blood drops to normal
  • Oxygen level in blood increases to normal
At 24 hours
  • Chance of a heart attack decreases
At 48 hours
  • Nerve endings start regrowing
  • Ability to smell and taste is enhanced
At 1 year
  • Excess risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker

Source: www.lungusa.org

Tips to Quit

  • Set a quit date - Once you quit, don't ever use tobacco ever again...ever
  • Get support and encouragement - From family, friends and co-workers. Join a support group, or eet with a counselor. The more support, the better your chance of quitting.
  • Learn new skills and behaviors - Change your routine, find positive things that reduce stress. Drink lots of water.
  • Consider using medication and use it correctly - Ask your counselor or health provider for options.
  • Prepare yourself for difficult situations and possible relapse - Talk to your health care provider or cessation counselor if you are having any problems. Make a list of why have quit. Keep the list and look at it often.
  • It is not easy, but it may be the best decision you ever make.

Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)

NRT provides nicotine in the form of gums, patches, pills, sprays, inhalers or lozenges, without the other harmful chemicals found in cigarettes. NRT is designed to treat the very difficult cravings and withdrawal symptoms that 70% to 90% of smokers say is their only reason for not giving up cigarettes.
Studies have shown that pairing NRT with a program that helps to change behavior may DOUBLE your chance of successfully quitting tobacco.

Resources to help you QUIT

Maryland Resource Center for Quitting Tobacco Use and Initiation - MDQUIT

1-800-QUIT NOW
Program Description: A telephone-based program where calls to 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) are answered by coaches trained to improve a smoker's chances of successfully quitting smoking. For a limited time, callers can receive Free patches and gum.

Latino Health Initiative
Program Description: A group cessation program designed to be culturally and linguistic appropriate and sensitive to the Latino community.
Contact Information:
Latino Health Initiative

Holy Cross Hospital - NIccotine Dependence Center
Program Description: Adult group cessation.
Contact Information:
Holy Cross Hospital
Silver Spring

Suburban Hospital
Program Description: Adult group cessation
Contact Information:
Suburban Hospital
Bethesda, Maryland

Montgomery General Hospital
Program Description: Adult group cessation
Contact Information:
Montgomery General Hospital
Olney, Maryland

Tobacco Independence Campaign
Program Description: One-on-one counseling in tobacco addiction targeted to the African American community
Contact information: Tobacco Independence Campaign – 301-879-7933 or