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Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line offers enhanced tools for smokers

New mobile and online apps offer extra help to those who want to quit

Two-thirds of Alaska adults who currently smoke say they want to quit. The state Department of Health and Social Services is now offering additional support to help them. Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line has enhanced the free tools it offers to provide even greater support to help tobacco users successfully quit for good.

Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line now offers Text2Quit and Web Coach.

Text2Quit allows those who are quitting to work with a quit coach via their mobile phone. Text2Quit features a series of interactive text messages — including tips on coping skills, games, quizzes, and motivational and educational reminders — that are personalized to a participant's quit plan.

Web Coach is an online program with an extensive array of support tools, including connecting online with a Quit Coach or other tobacco users who are looking to quit; engaging with other participants via forums, blogs, profile pages and articles; and using Quit Tracker to chart participants’ progress and see how much money they’ve saved since quitting tobacco.

“We’re pleased to offer these exciting new programs that enhance the free services provided by Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line,” said Alison Kulas, Alaska Tobacco Prevention and Control program manager. “Web Coach and Text2Quit provide greater opportunities for successfully quitting. Alaskans looking to quit or to stay tobacco free are encouraged to take advantage of the new free tools available to support them.”

Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line also offers Food and Drug Administration-approved nicotine replacement therapy to all callers looking for additional quit support. Nicotine replacement therapy, when used in combination with behavioral counseling, can increase a person’s chance of quitting and staying tobacco free. Approximately 30 percent of callers to Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line have successfully quit tobacco.

Tobacco use continues to be the No. 1 cause of preventable death in Alaska, costs Alaskans $327 million in direct medical expenditures and an additional $236 million in lost productivity due to tobacco-related deaths each year.

Smokers looking to quit are invited to call Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) for free support and advice from experienced coaches, or go online to alaskaquitline.com.

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