Smoking cessation phone coaching for patients

20 May 2020 08:52

The Smoking Cessation Clinic at the Survivorship Center has observed that more people relapse after giving up smoking since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. To give these patients some extra support, our smoking cessation coaches will hold additional coaching sessions by phone.

It is understandable that right now is a hard time to quit, and that a relapse is tempting. Patients may experience more anxiety, stress, uncertainties about their treatment, or worries about their vulnerability as a result of oncological treatment. Loneliness and boredom because of social isolation or the increased pressure of living closely together as a family can also trigger people to pick up smoking again.

Important, especially now.

It is more important than ever for our smoking cessation coaches to come up with a plan on how to deal with relapses and what kind of interventions are important - because quitting and continuing is important, especially now. Our pulmonologist Wanda de Kanter said: “Smokers are most likely extra vulnerable to the coronavirus because smoking leads them to put their fingers - or infected cigarettes - to their face more often. That increases the risk of contracting the virus. Smokers are more sensitive to the common cold and flu as well. Then there are the receptors in the lungs that the virus can attach to. Smoking increases the amount of receptors you have in your lungs, which increases the risk of the virus entering the body. And then there’s the increased risk of complications because of COPD, cardiovascular disease, or neurological damage as a result of smoking. This can lead to more serious complications when contacting COVID-19 due to a lower immune system for cardiovascular patients, for example, which makes it harder for the body to fight the disease.”

Help to stop smoking (and to keep it up)

Plenty of reasons to quit smoking, and not to pick it back up again! We would love to assist our patients in this process. Anyone looking for some extra assistance in their journey to quit smoking can contact one of our smoking cessation coaches for a phone consultation by emailing, or ask your practicing physician to refer you. 

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