Every year over 392,000 people die from tobacco-caused disease, making it the leading cause of preventable death in the US. Another 50,000 people die from exposure to secondhand smoke. Among current smokers, chronic lung disease accounts for 73 percent of smoking-related conditions. In fact, the list of disease caused by smoking include COPD, coronary heart disease, stroke, abdominal aortic aneurysms, pneumonia and bladder, esophageal, laryngeal, lung, oral, throat, cervical, kidney, stomach and pancreatic cancers. Smoking is also a major factor in a host of other conditions and disorders.
According to lung.org, “cigarette smoke contains over 4,800 chemicals, 69 of which are known to cause cancer,” and on average, smokers die significantly earlier than nonsmokers: 13.2 years for men and 14.5 years for women.
The prospect of better health is a major reason for quitting, but there are other reasons, too. Smoking is expensive. Multiply how much money you spend on tobacco every day by 365 (days per year). Now multiply that number by the number of years you have been using tobacco. The long-term cost of tobacco use can be significant. In addition, there are other possible costs including higher costs for health and life insurance, and likely health care costs due to tobacco‐related problems.
While it is widely known that quitting is the single most important step a smoker can take to improve the length and quality of their life, they too know that quitting is hard. Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. We at Portneuf Primary Care encourage you to discuss smoking cessation with your primary care doctor. We know that patients who receive even brief advice from a physician to quit smoking are more likely to quit than those that received no advice. We can equip you with the support and tools you need to succeed. If you are considering quitting before your schedule visit, the American Lung Association offers a Freedom from Smoking program.
Recently, Portneuf Medical Center joined a growing number of Idaho hospitals and is now a smoke and tobacco free campus. There are many reasons to offer a smoke free campus:
- Smoking kills more people than alcohol, AIDS, car crashes, illegal drugs, murders, and suicides combined.
- Annual health care costs in Idaho directly caused by smoking exceed $300 million.
- Second-hand smoke causes emphysema, heart disease, lung disease and cancer.
- Smoking-caused productivity losses in Idaho are $317 million annually.
- Most of all... We want you to Be Well.
If you or a loved is ready to quit smoking or if you are in need of medical attention, Portneuf Primary Care’s knowledgeable staff is here for you. We are able to quickly access health conditions and establish an effective treatment plan. To reach my office or to schedule an appointment, call 208-239-3815. To find another type of physician, call Portneuf Medical Center’s physician referral line toll-free at 1-877-721-6673.
Dr. Luis M. Fernandez is board certified in family medicine. He graduated from Instituto Superior de Ciencias Medicas, Cuba and completed residency training at Idaho State University Family Medicine. Dr. Fernandez is an Emergency Medicine Specialist with over 20 years of experience and practice in Family Medicine, Obstetrics & Gynecology, Emergency Medicine, and Critical Care Medicine. Portneuf Medical Center is pleased to on staff at Portneuf Primary Care. He and his partners are currently taking new patients.