By Nyesha Stone
How many smokers do you know? And how many of those smokers have told you they’ve wanted to or have tried to quit smoking? The number is quite high, isn’t it? Well, there’s a reason for that and it’s not just because Tobacco is addictive. According to Director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products Mitch Zeller, only seven percent of smokers actually quit smoking.
In 2015, 36.5 million adults in the U.S. were cigarette smokers, and of those smokers, two out of three said they tried to quit smoking, according to a FDA press release. Zeller and the FDA team have created an initiative to help smokers put down their cigarettes.
The new public education program is called “Every Try Counts,” and what this means is although quitting is hard, every time you try, you’re a step closer to reaching your goal. This campaign provides encouraging advertisements, and it also displays the health benefits of quitting on the ad.
“Smokers typically have a number of quitting attempts,” said Zeller. “What we’re trying to do with this campaign is to send a positive message and encouraging message.”
Ninety percent of cigarettes are bought from gas stations or convenience stores, so Every Try Count is targeting those locations. They’ll be displaying motivational ads around these areas since smokers seem to face a lot of triggers that typically feature cigarette advertisements, according to a FDA press release.
“The campaign celebrates each quit attempt as a positive step toward success because research shows those who have tried quitting before are more likely to try again… ‘Every Try Counts’ is a part of the FDA’s ongoing efforts to reduce the enormous public health burden of tobacco use and will complement the agency’s at-risk youth and young adult education campaigns aimed at prevention,” the press release read.
Every Try Counts is being brought home to Milwaukee this month, in hopes of encouraging people to break their habits they hold on tightly to.
The national smoking rate is 15 percent yet Milwaukee’s is 22 percent, which is why this campaign is being introduced to the city.
The FDA partnered with the National Institutes of Health’s National Cancer Institute to create a website and a mobile app that provides smokers with multiple resources to help deal with and fight their addiction.
Every Try Counts is a two-year campaign that will run in 35 U.S. markets and feature print, digital, radio, and out-of-home ads all in hopes to break the smoker’s cycle.
To find out more about the campaign and its resources visit http://www.everytrycounts.gov/