stop smoking

Smoking alone kills more than 480,000 Americans each year, and for every person who dies because of smoking, at least 30 people live with a serious smoking-related illness.¹

There are many reasons to stop smoking tobacco products. The many health issues caused by, associated with, or made worse by smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke, including cancer (lung, throat, head and neck, colorectal), heart disease, stroke, asthma, diabetes, buerger’s disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Annual health care costs in North Dakota directly caused by smoking is $379 million.² About 100,000 South Dakotans use tobacco, and about 70,000 of them say they want to quit.³

If you, a patient or a family member are thinking about quitting smoking and would like help, a quitline might be just what you need to succeed. Quitlines provide free coaching – over the phone – to help you quit smoking. Quitlines provide many of the services and similar support you get in a stop-smoking class or from your doctor and can be a valuable complement to your doctor’s care. Both North Dakota and South Dakota have quitlines for those seeking assistance to quit smoking or using smokeless tobacco products, including vapes or electronic cigarettes.

Reasons Why Calling a Quitline Can Lend to Successquit smoking picture

  1. Get help to stop smoking—free, with no judgment. When you call, you can speak confidentially with a highly trained quit coach. 1-800-QUIT-NOW
  2. Quit coaches help create a plan that can work for you. Quit coaches are trained to help people who smoke to quit. They understand what you are going through. Many used to smoke themselves. They are all trained to be good listeners and to give callers encouragement, support and helpful tips.
  3. Quit coaches can help access quit-smoking medicines. Quit coaches can help you connect with quit-smoking medicines through your health insurer or community programs. They may also be able to provide you with these medications for free and may also be able to send an initial two-week supply to your home. Learn more about quit-smoking medicines and how they can help you quit for good.
  4. Get helpful tips on how to deal with cravings and withdrawal, how to get the right kind of help from your friends and family, what websites, apps, and texting programs might help you quit, and whether to use quit-smoking medication and how to use it.
  5. You’re more likely to stay quit! Quitlines are proven to increase your chances of quitting successfully and staying quit. A quit coach will work with you to develop a plan that is personalized for your needs.

If you are wanting to learn more about using a quitline, or learn more ways to stop smoking, visit the CDC: How to Quit Smoking. More detailed fact sheets on tobacco’s toll in each state are available by emailing

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  2. Tobacco Free Kids Initiative
  3. South Dakota Quitline

Better Together Coalition Gears ImageBest Practice Brief Series: Tobacco Cessation and Nicotine Addiction

Great Plains QIN and the South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care hosted a Best Practice Brief Series recently on tobacco cessation and nicotine addiction; one of the sessions featured the South Dakota Quitline. Access the Series. Best Practice Briefs are 20-minute micro-learning sessions to highlight successful system and policy change. The briefs are short, to the point, and real. Real people and real processes that really work!