Get free help to quit commercial tobacco and nicotine
The many benefits of quitting
Quitting tobacco and nicotine is one of the best things you can do for your health and your outlook on life. In fact, smoking is the number one preventable cause of death and disease in the United States. When you quit, you help yourself to:
- Lower your risk of cancer, heart disease, and stroke. Tobacco products significantly increase the risk for these and other serious illnesses.
- Protect and preserve your mental health Nicotine increases anxiety and causes addiction.
- Improve your financial health. Tobacco and nicotine are expensive, and they cause costly health issues.
- Believe in yourself. When you quit smoking, vaping, or dipping, you realize you really can overcome difficult challenges.
- Enjoy hobbies, activities and exercise more. You will breathe better and have more energy.
You also empower yourself to protect your community as you:
- Improve the health of the people you love. Children and babies are especially vulnerable to second-hand smoke and/or vapors.
- Respect the environment. Tobacco and vape waste is unpleasant and dangerous to our waterways and wildlife.
- Stand strong in the face of Big Tobacco. The industry uses predatory tactics to get and keep people addicted.
Learn how to help young people quit
If a teen in your life has already started using e-cigarettes (vapes), encourage them to text VAPEFREE to 873373 for free. Parents and other trusted adults can also start the Live Vape Free online course to get tools to help support a young person in their quit journey.
Get help to overcome tobacco and nicotine addiction
For all Wisconsinites aged 13+ who smoke, vape, or dip, the Quit Line provides free one-on-one counseling and information and local quit program referrals. Starter packs of nicotine-replacement medications like nicotine gum, patches, and lozenges are available for medically eligible people aged 18 and older. In addition to standard telephone coaching, participants can also interact with coaches 1:1 via live online chat, texting, or group video. Text "READY" to 34191 Call 800-Quit-Now
First Breath is Wisconsin’s free program to help women make positive changes to their tobacco, alcohol and substance use during pregnancy and beyond. Participants work with a health educator from their community who will take time to listen and design a personalized plan that works—all with no judgment, just support. Call 608-251-1675 (Weekdays 8 a.m.-5 p.m.)
The American Indian Quit Line offers free, culturally tailored support to help indigenous people aged 18+ to quit commercial tobacco. Callers receive seven free phone calls with a trained coach who is experienced in working with American Indians and has respect for their culture. If medically eligible, participants can receive 12 weeks of free nicotine-replacement medications like nicotine gum, patches, and lozenges. Call 888-7Ai-Quit.
Teens who want to quit vaping can get help through the Live Vape Free program. Young people get one-on-one support from a coach, a personalized road map for their quit journey, plus many more resources and loads of encouragement. A good fit for those who want support from the start or may have tried quitting on their own and have questions about how to succeed. Text "VAPEFREE" to 873373.
The University of Wisconsin Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention (UW-CTRI)
Systems-level change for tobacco and nicotine treatment
Mental health and tobacco use
About 13% of the adult population smokes, and people living with mental and behavioral health conditions are two to four times more likely to smoke than the general population. A person in recovery from illicit drug addiction but who continues smoking is more than twice as likely to relapse, compared to those who quit smoking at the same time they quit other drugs. The Wisconsin Nicotine Treatment Integration Project (WiNTiP) works with mental health and substance abuse treatment providers to integrate tobacco and nicotine treatment into their efforts.
29% of Wisconsin residents diagnosed with depression smoke.
Clinical outreach efforts
The UW-CTRI offers an education and outreach program to help clinicians and health care systems successfully integrate tobacco cessation treatment into their standards of care. Outreach staff connect with health care and social service providers including, but not limited to, mental health clinicians, primary care providers, and correctional health care staff. UW-CTRI also assists health care systems and staff with designing and implementing tobacco- free policies for health care campuses. Access Clinician Training and Technical Assistance at UW-CTRI.
The Wisconsin Medicaid Tobacco Cessation Benefit
Wisconsin Medicaid (including Medicaid, BadgerCare Plus, and SeniorCare) provides no-cost tobacco quit counseling and medications to help people with low incomes quit smoking, vaping, or chewing tobacco. Covered medications include select prescriptions and over-the-counter products. Medicaid does not require prior authorization or co-payments for tobacco quit counseling services or products. Providers can learn more at the UW-CTRI Medicaid/BadgerCare Coverage website.
The word "tobacco" on this page refers to commercial tobacco, not traditional Native American tobacco.
Traditional tobacco: a sacred medicine for healing; offerings to the Creator; and spiritual gifts to express gratitude, show respect, and ask for prayers or advice. Commercial tobacco ("tobacco"): a corruption of traditional tobacco into dangerous recreational commodities like cigarettes, vapes, and chewing tobacco.