There are many services and resources for people who choose to reduce or quit smoking. Preventing youth from starting to smoke, following laws that protect non-smokers from tobacco smoke, and making local policies that support smoke-free living are important parts of reducing illness and death caused by using tobacco products.
It is normal to try several times before successfully quitting smoking. Deciding to quit could be the single most important thing a smoker does for his/her health.
Call 1-866-797-0000 to speak with someone about quitting. A free and confidential service for health advice and information 24 hours a day, seven days a week in more than 300 languages.
Visit www.myquit.ca to create a personalized plan for quitting. Book into a local clinic for individual or group counselling and receive free NRT.
Smokers’ Help Line
Visit Smokers’ Helpline for free tips and tools to help you quit tobacco use and increase your chance of being successful. Support is available online and through text messaging in English and French by texting iQuit123456.
Physicians/Health Care Providers
Physicians and other health care providers can offer information and counselling about quitting smoking and can recommend or prescribe medications to help you quit smoking.
Private Health Insurance
If you have private health insurance (e.g. through work), call your insurance company to see what smoking cessation services your plan offers.
Pharmacy Smoking Cessation Program
Through the Pharmacy Smoking Cessation Program, pharmacists can recommend over-the-counter medications to help you quit smoking and can prescribe certain medications for smoking cessation. Some pharmacies offer a smoking cessation program which offers counselling for eligible Ontarians.
If you receive your medications through the Ontario Drug Benefit plan (ODB), check with your pharmacist to see if they are offering free quit smoking support through this program. You may be eligible for Champix (varenicline) or Zyban (bupropion).
Research has consistently shown that using certain smoking cessation medications doubles the chances of successfully quitting in clinical settings.
Smoking Treatment for Ontario Patients (STOP) Study
The STOP Study is a research project of the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) that aims to discover the most effective ways to deliver free smoking cessation medication and counselling to smokers across Ontario.
Patients at Family Health Teams, Community Health Centres, and addiction agencies in Renfrew County and District can enroll in the STOP Study and receive ongoing smoking cessation treatment. This includes Nicotine Replacement Therapy and counselling support, at no cost. Other residents of Renfrew County and District can enroll by contacting Addictions Treatment Service (613-432-9855/1-800-265-0197), Mackay Manor (613-432-7666/1-877-819-4181) or West Champlain Family Health Team (613-735-8051).
Smoking Treatment For Ontario Patients with Youth And Young Adults (STOP-YAYA)
The STOP program is offering a program for Youth and Young Adults (18 to 29 years of age) attempting to quit smoking. Through the program, eligible participants will be able to receive two weeks of free NRT patches. To learn more about the program and to enroll, visit: www.stopstudy.ca
First Week Challenge Contest
The First Week Challenge Contest offers a chance to win a $500 cash prize by quitting smoking or stopping other forms of tobacco for one week.
Adults 19 and over can register on the web site by the last day of each month. For a chance to win the cash prize, stay tobacco-free for the first 7 days of the next month. A new winner is randomly chosen every month.
- One Step at a Time – A series of 3 booklets on smoking and quitting developed by the Canadian Cancer Society.
- For Smokers Who Want to Quit – Information, activities and tools to help guide you through the process of quitting and support you in reaching your goal of becoming smoke-free.
- For Smokers Who Don’t Want to Quit – Information and activities to help you think about why you smoke and how it affects you and your family.
- Help a Smoker Quit – Tools and strategies to support smokers along their quit journey.
- Journey 2 Quit – A workbook by the Lung Association of Ontario to help prepare to quit and create a quit plan.
- On the Road to Quitting – Guides by Health Canada for adults and young adults with information and strategies to successfully stop smoking.
- Quit 4 Life – A quit smoking booklet and program for youth developed by Health Canada.
Break It Off A campaign that helps young adults quit smoking and stay smoke-free.
Clear the Air For LGBT communities. Information on the benefits of quitting smoking, an assessment tool, quit tips, and other resources.
Indigenous Tobacco Program Tobacco-Wise information on tobacco and health from the Indigenous Tobacco Program of Cancer Care Ontario.
Pregnets For moms, moms-to-be and health care providers. Includes answers to common questions about quitting, discussion boards and other resources for quitting smoking.
Positive Quitting For people living with HIV, employees at HIV clinics and AIDS service organizations. Quit smoking resources, links to smoking cessation helplines, training opportunities, model policies, and facts about smoking and HIV.
Ministry of Health and Long Term Care – Support to Quit Smoking – It often takes many attempts – and some help – to succeed at anything. Quitting smoking is no different. Find support to help you quit.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit promotes national, provincial, regional and locally developed mass media and social marketing campaigns with the goal of preventing initiation or escalation of the use of tobacco, and other harmful inhaled substances and products (such as e-cigarettes). Youth/young adults are especially vulnerable to starting to smoke and to becoming addicted to nicotine because of their stage of brain development. We implement activities to increase knowledge of the health risks associated with tobacco and e-cigarette use.
Exposure to tobacco use can influence young people’s decision to use tobacco products. Although the Smoke-Free Ontario Act prohibits smoking in many public places, children and youth are still exposed to tobacco use in a variety of settings, including movies. The Ontario Coalition for Smoke-Free Movies is raising awareness about the impact that smoking in movies has on youth smoking. The Coalition is calling for a rating change in Ontario that would prevent tobacco from being shown in future movies rated for kids and teens.
The Smoke-Free Ontario Act (SFOA), 2017, prohibits smoking tobacco, the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) to vape any substance, and the smoking of cannabis (medical and non-medical) in all enclosed workplaces (including vehicles), enclosed public places, and other designated places in Ontario. This is necessary to protect workers and the public from the hazards of second-hand smoke and vapour.
Smoking refers to the smoking or holding of lighted tobacco or cannabis (medical and non-medical). Vaping refers to inhaling or exhaling vapour from an electronic cigarette or holding an activated electronic cigarette, whether or not the vapour contains nicotine.
The Act prohibits the sale and supply of tobacco and vapour products to anyone who is less than 19 years old. It also places restrictions on how tobacco and vapour products can be displayed, handled and promoted in retail stores.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit enforces the SFOA in workplaces, public places, schools, health care facilities, tobacco and vapour retailers, and other designated places.Tobacco Enforcement Officers conduct routine inspections, investigate complaints and enforce the SFOA. For additional information or signage please contact Renfrew County and District Health Unit at 613-735-8654 or 1-800-267-1097 at extension 555.
Renfrew County and District Health Unit encourages municipalities, workplaces and landlords to create tobacco-free spaces that are not included in the SFOA. Smoke-free laws, regulations and policies that help reduce people’s exposure to second-hand smoke are important and add to provincial efforts to stop tobacco-related illness and death. Renfrew County and District Health Unit can provide support and assist you with developing smoke-free policies.
Residents have a right to smoke-free air in their home. Smoke-Free Housing Ontario provides resources for landlords and tenants to make their apartment buildings and other multi-unit dwellings smoke-free.
Promoting Smoke-Free Policies: A Guide for Workplaces helps employers protect their employees and customers from second-hand smoke. The guide explains the “why” and “how” of creating, promoting and enforcing smoke‐free policies in the workplace.
Tobacco and/or E-cigarette retailers can use the SFOA, 2017, Guide to Retailers (EN) (FR) to assist in training employees to be aware of their responsibilities for the sale and display of tobacco and e-cigarette products.
Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling an aerosol (commonly referred to as “vapour”) produced by a vaping device, such as an e-cigarette. The aerosol is a mixture of chemicals and small particles that can damage the lungs. E-cigarettes are reported to be less harmful than tobacco cigarettes, however less harmful doesn’t mean safe or harmless.
The short and long-term health risks associated with vaping continue to be examined and are not fully known. The following resources and websites contain information on the risks of vaping.
Cancer Care Ontario: Vaping and Your Health Fact Sheet (March 2020)
Health Canada and the Public Health Agency of Canada launched a new web page to keep Canadians informed about Canadian cases of severe pulmonary illness related to vaping. The numbers of confirmed or probable cases in Canada will be posted and updated weekly or as required.