MIAMI COUNTY — According to a recent survey by TNS, a global research organization, having the support of others is necessary to help people to quit smoking. The survey revealed 80 percent of smokers in the U.S. trying to quit need support to be successful. Thanks to a new phone app, this may be just what they need.
The American Lung Association and Pfizer Inc. partnered together to create the phone app called Quitter’s Circle in effort to help smokers have the support and information they need to trash the ash. The app was officially released on Tuesday.
Users create their own profile on the app, where they can make a quit plan, have access to doctors, and invite friends and family to join their profile to provide support. Supporters can also help cut the costs of quitting through crowdfunding, reducing costs such as doctor visits, counseling, and medication.
“Quitting smoking is the single most important step a smoker can take, but quitting can be lonely and hard work without support,” Harold Wimmer, national president and CEO of the American Lung Association said. “By downloading the Quitter’s Circle app, smokers looking to quit can join a community who want to help, and invite friends and family to be part of their Quit Team, so they can follow their journey and provide ‘quitspiration’ to keep them going.”
Amanda Koenig, the new tobacco treatment specialist at Miami County Public Health Department, showed support of the digital initiative.
“It’s nice that there’s an app, but I’m not sure if all clients will have access to it,” Koenig said. “Quitter’s Circle is interesting if I have clientele that can access it.”
According to Koenigh, in Miami County, 25.7 percent of adults smoke, with smoking-related deaths being 68 per 100,000 of males and 38.6 per 100,000 of females. There is a large percentage of pregnant women in Miami County who smoke, being 21 percent; this is higher than the state average of 17 percent.
While Quitter’s Circle is a great resource to help quit smoking, Koenig is another resource for smokers in Miami County trying to quit, but currently, her focus is on helping prenatal smokers. Koenig helps through counseling and encouraging her clients to quit.
“(Smoking) is a stress relief to a lot of people, but it’s an addiction,” Koenig said. “Nicotine is very addictive and the social aspects (to smoking) encourages people to continue.”
If you are a smoker ready to quit or know someone who is and want to support them, the app can be downloaded on Android, Apple smart phones, and Apple Watch. For more information, visit www.QuittersCircle.com.
For additional help, Koenig can be contacted at (937) 573-3511 or [email protected]