More young adults smoke in this province compared to all other age groups, and they overwhelmingly say that they want to quit. The best way to do that? Use evidence-based quit aids and get into a program that has been specifically tailored for young adults 18-29.
The Huron County Health Unit encourages local young adults to enter wouldurather…, an annual contest put on by Leave The Pack Behind that motivates Ontario young adults to quit smoking, cut back on their smoking, or stay smoke-free for the chance to win cash prizes.
“The quitting process takes time and multiple attempts,” says Public Health Nurse Katie Crocker. “The earlier in life we get young adults to start the process, the earlier they will be successful.”
Quitting smoking can be difficult, and not everyone is ready to quit right now. That’s why this unique contest offers four different categories in order to meet participants where they are at right now. People who smoke can enter to quit, cut back by half, or commit to stay away from smoking anytime they party or drink alcohol. People who don’t smoke or quit smoking can also enter the contest to commit to continuing their smoke-free lifestyle.
To support young adults to quit successfully, the wouldurather contest offers contestants the option to receive support emails, add a personal support crew, access 8-weeks of free nicotine patch or gum, and get proactive support calls or texts from Smokers Helpline.
Hannah Mahaffy, the 2018 contest winner, said “Quitting smoking has given me more lung capacity to do the things I love, like enjoying all day long snowshoe adventures with my better half. Now I encourage YOU to LEAVE THE PACK BEHIND and share your story, tips and tricks for others who are struggling with quitting toxic habits such as smoking cigarettes.”
Last year, more than 8500 young adults entered the wouldurather… contest. Research suggests that up to 20% of individuals who enter the contest will quit smoking compared to the 5-7% success rate that can be expected when individuals quit on their own.
wouldurather… is available to all young adults ages 18-29 who are residents of Ontario. Registration is open at wouldurather.ca until January 27, 2019 at 11:59 pm.