Health Watch: Quitting Smoking Starts with Key Questions

Smoking is not a habit, but an addiction that may take several tries to break.  SLUCare vascular surgeon, Dr. Matthew Smeds says Missouri ranks 9th in the country for the number of adult daily smokers.

"So as a vascular surgeon, I felt the onus was on me to to be involved with helping people quit."

If a patient is not completely sure they want to quit, or has tried to quit before unsuccessfully, Dr. Smeds starts with an interview to help identify what specifically the patient's habits are.

"You want to know what their habits involved as far as smoking goes. Do they like the fact that they are holding the cigarette and inhaling, or do they like the fact that they are getting the nicotine in."

Answers to these questions can help Smeds decide which therapies might work best.

"These run the gamut from Chantix or Bruproprion which are oral pills. All the way up to patches or gum or inhalers that contain nicotine, and it's a nicotine replacement therapy. The goal for that is to basically decrease the amount of nicotine you are taking in in controlled manner."  And to help patients break the habit for good.

Quitting smoking is an ongoing learning process that may at times feel overwhelming. You are not alone. SLUCare's goal is to make your journey easier.

Smoking Cessation

Learn how smoking affects your health and receive the tools you need to help prepare and motivate you to quit. Finding the best way for you is key to your success. For more information on this 8-week series offered throughout the year, email Personalized smoking cessation consultations are also available.

To learn more click here.