All Groups (General Public)

Know the Facts

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease and kills more than 480,000 Americans each year. More than 41,000 of these deaths are the result of exposure to secondhand smoke.

For every smoking-related death, at least 30 people live with a serious smoking-related illness. Smoking causes immediate damage to your body, which can lead to long-term illnesses, including:

The United States spends more than $300 billion a year on smoking-related illness, including more than $225 billion in direct medical care for adults and more than $156 billion in lost productivity due to premature death and exposure to secondhand smoke.1,2

For More Information

Real Stories: People Featured in Tips®

Learn the real stories of people who are suffering from smoking-related diseases and disabilities.

Learn more about all Tips participants in our Real Stories section.

Quitting Help

Go online. Visit the Tips How to Quit Smoking area featuring a Quit Guide. The Tips website is also available in Spanish, at

Call a quitline. A quitline provides free coaching over the phone to help you quit smoking. Quitline coaches can answer questions, help you develop a quit plan, and provide support. Coaching help is available in several languages:

Use an app.
The quitSTART appexternal icon is a free smartphone app that helps you quit smoking with tailored tips, inspiration, and challenges.

Sign up for texts. Smokefree.govexternal icon offers free text messaging programsexternal icon that give 24/7 encouragement, advice, and tips to help you quit smoking for good. You can sign up or opt-out at any time.

Free Quitting Resources


Smartphone Apps/Text



Beatrice R., age 40, started smoking regularly when she was 13 and smoked for 25 years. She decided to quit for good when her young son wrote her a letter asking her to stop smoking. She used patches and other medicines to help ease withdrawal symptoms. Now Beatrice has more energy than when she smoked, and she cooks more—because food tastes so much better. She encourages anyone who wants to quit smoking to do it, and to get help if they need it.

“I want to offer hope to people that it is possible for you to join the ranks of nonsmokers.”

Today I start my quit journey. Free resources provided by
  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014 [accessed 2018 Feb 22].
  2. Xu X, Shrestha SS, Trivers KF, Neff L, Armour BS, King BA. U.S. Healthcare Spending Attributable to Cigarette Smoking in 2014. Preventive Medicine. icon [accessed 2021 May 17].