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HealthBeat

Quit smoking with help from an app

The state Department of Health wants to help you kick your tobacco habit and is using a smartphone app to do it.

The health department is offering 1,900 free downloads of the SmartQuit app, an evidence-based smoking cessation program created at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

A study conducted by the Seattle cancer research center concluded SmartQuit users were two to three times more likely to kick their nicotine addiction than those who tried to quit on their own, according to the health department.

The state is using money from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to offer the app for free to the first 1,900 people who complete an online survey. After that, the app will cost $49.99 for six months access.

The entire program is delivered via smartphone and can used with or without nicotine replacement therapy.

The SmartQuit website offered some information about how the app works in a four minute video.

Users will be asked to create a quit plan and then track your urges for a few days. New content is unlocked each day to teach you new ways to deal with the “big, gnarly urge monster.”

The app includes eight required exercises and more than 40 on-demand exercises, stories and tips that can be accessed for additional motivation, to combat urges or for advice after slipping.

Those who complete the exercises, receive a certificate of completion.

Marissa Harshman

I'm the health reporter for The Columbian newspaper in Vancouver, Wash. I started at The Columbian -- my hometown newspaper -- in September 2009. Reach me at marissa.harshman@columbian.com or 360-735-4546.

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