why is this event important?

smiling man in cap

About 32.4 million American adults still smoke cigarettes, and smoking remains the single largest preventable cause of death and illness in the world. Smoking causes an estimated 480,000 deaths every year, or about 1 in 5 deaths. And more than 16 million Americans live with a smoking-related disease. 

While the rates of cigarette smoking have declined over the past several decades, from 42% in 1965 to 13.7% in 2019, the gains have been inconsistent. Some groups smoke more heavily or at higher rates and suffer disproportionately from smoking-related cancer and other diseases. These populations tend to be those who experience inequities in multiple areas of their lives, including those at lower socioeconomic levels, those without college degrees, American Indians/Alaska natives, African American/Black communities, LGBTQ communities, those in the military, those with behavioral health conditions, and others. 

No matter your age or how long you’ve been smoking, quitting improves health both immediately and over the long term. Giving up smoking is a journey, and it can be hard, but you can increase your chances of success with a good plan and support. Getting help through counseling and medications doubles or even triples your chances of quitting successfully. 

History of the Great American Smokeout

get help quitting smoking

Event Tools & Resources

Quitting smoking is a process, and success may look different for different people. There are many ways to quit smoking, and some work better than others. The American Cancer Society can tell you about the steps you can take to quit smoking and help you find quit-smoking programs, resources, and support that can increase your chances of quitting successfully. To learn about the available tools, call us at 1-800-227-2345 or reach us via live chat. You can also find free tips and tools below.