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Help is available, free and confidential.

Take the first step. If you or someone you know needs help quitting tobacco or other substances, there are free and confidential resources available in Maine. 


Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. It harms nearly every organ in your body and negatively impacts your overall health and well-being. Quitting is the single most important thing you can do to improve your health.

Benefits of Quitting

You’ll experience the health benefits of not using tobacco within 20 minutes of your last cigarette and they continue as long as you remain tobacco-free. Other benefits of quitting include:

  • Living longer
  • Saving money
  • Decreased risk of chronic disease and death
  • Better complexion, appearance, and smell
  • Protecting your loved ones from secondhand smoke


Alcohol is a legal substance that can lead to addiction known as alcoholism. If you have a dependence on alcohol, it is best to seek help and limit your alcohol intake. Even if you are not addicted, there are other reasons that you may consider limiting alcohol use for personal and lifestyle choices.

Benefits of Quitting

If you have become dependent on alcohol, it is most likely impacting your life in many ways. Quitting is the best thing you can do to improve your health and contribute to a more meaningful life. Other benefits of quitting include:

  • Saving money
  • Reducing risk of diabetes and liver diseases
  • Decreased impact on social activities
  • Better alignment with lifestyle and religious beliefs
  • More stable mental health status

Other Substances

Illegal drugs and prescription medications are highly addictive. If you are experimenting or using drugs, there is no doubt that it will impact your life, relationships, and long-term goals. Quitting is hard, but with support and personal commitment it’s possible.

Benefits of Quitting

If you are using illegal drugs or prescription medications, the best thing to do for you health is to stop using. Other benefits include:

  • Avoiding financial stress
  • Reduced risk of death
  • Ability to repair damaged relationships
  • Better job security and performance
  • A healthier and happy life
  • Less concern and worry by your loved ones

Help Youth Stop Using

If your child is using tobacco, alcohol, or drugs, it will be up to him or her to make the decision to stop. Your support is critical to helping them. Here are some things you can do:

Don't lecture, punish, or threaten. Show your interest in a non-threatening way by asking a few questions.
Don’t accept excuses like it's "not a big deal" or "I can quit anytime."
Find out why your child is using. Your child may want to be accepted by a peer group, or he or she might want your attention.
Discuss what changes can be made in his or her life to help them stop.
Make a list with your teen or preteen of the reasons why they want to quit smoking or stop using drugs and alcohol. Refer back to this list when your teen is tempted.
Use personal stories of you and your loved ones to show how using tobacco, alcohol, and drugs may impact his or her life.
Prepare for mood swings, challenges, stress, and social impact that these lifestyle changes may bring.
Contact your child’s physician for connections to local community support services.
For help with quitting tobacco, <a href="">Maine QuitLink</a> offers free and confidential support. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW. For help with quitting alcohol or substances visit <a href="">211Maine</a> .
Find a local Student Intervention & Reintegration Program (SIRP), for high school-aged youth who have experimented with alcohol and/or other drugs. Find more resources and information for help with youth alcohol and drug use.

Help Others Quit

If you know someone who is ready to quit tobacco, alcohol, and/or drugs, your support is very important to his or her long-term success.

You Can’t Make Somebody Quit, But You Can Help

  • Offer lots of encouragement.
  • Don’t nag them about quitting – wait for them to say it’s time to quit.
  • Let them know that you’re proud of them.
  • Instead of offering advice, ask how you can help.
  • Give them practical help.
  • Help make a list of reasons for quitting.
  • Help them stay busy.
  • Make a list of things to do together, like taking walks, doing yard work, going to the movies, the mall, or out to eat.
  • Let them know you understand.
  • Have patience; it can be tough to learn new ways to do things.
  • Don’t take grouchy comments personally.
  • Offer your help.
  • Think of ways to make things less stressful.
  • Help with chores or other things.
  • Keep offering support.
  • Listen well when they talk.
  • Remind them how far they have come, and keep offering help.
  • Be prepared for withdrawal symptoms and relapse.

Pregnant and Quitting

Maternal substance and tobacco use during pregnancy contributes to premature birth, low birth weight, and birth defects, the leading causes of neonatal infant mortality. Although you may experience judgment and disapproval from others regarding your substance use, treatment professionals are informed, compassionate, and bound by confidentiality. If you are using tobacco, alcohol, or other drugs when you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant, you should talk to your physician about safe treatment options and the best prenatal care plan.