Great American Smokeout

Great American Smokeout History

Today is the Great American Smokeout.  This informal annual event encourages Americans to stop tobacco smoking for 24 hours, hoping the decision not to smoke will last forever.  

The Great American Smokeout is promoted by the American Cancer Society and is held on the third Thursday of November each year in an effort to reduce cases of preventable cancers, reduce secondhand smoke and improve the health of all Americans.  As everyone knows, smoking has been shown to cause a variety of cancers, most notably lung and mouth cancer. Lung cancer is currently the leading cause of Cancer death in the United States and the most preventable type of cancer worldwide.  

Great American Smokeout Facts & Quotes

  • The holiday began in 1970, when a man in Massachusetts asked people to give up smoking for one day, and donate the money saved to the local high school scholarship fund.
  • According to the Center for Disease Control, smoking is responsible for 1 in 3 cancer-related deaths, and 1 in 5 deaths from any cause.  Worldwide, tobacco use causes more than 5 million deaths per year.
  • The Center for Disease Control states that life expectancy for smokers is 10 years less than that of non-smokers.
  • The Center for Disease Control states that a middle-aged man who smokes, triples his risk of dying from some type of heart disease.
  • More Doctors Smoke Camels than Any Other Cigarette - line used in 1949 commercial for Camel Cigarettes

If you are a smoker, 

  •  Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for support in quitting.  If you're in Plaquemines Parish, you can also call the Plaquemines Community CARE Centers Foundation, Inc. @ 504-393-5750.
  • Talk to someone you know who smokes and challenge them to quit for the day.
  • Chew sugarless gum as an alternative.  

Red Ribbon Week - Drug Free America


Red Ribbon Week is an alcohol, tobacco, and other drug and violence prevention awareness campaign observed annually in October in the United States.  It is the Nation’s oldest and largest drug prevention program, reaching millions of Americans.  Red Ribbon Week is celebrated annually October 23-31.  By wearing red ribbons and participating in community anti-drug events, young people pledge to live a drug-free lifestyle and pay tribute to DEA Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena.

Teens - Get the Facts About Drugs.

Parents, Educators, Caregivers - Get Smart About Drugs.

National Teen Driver Safety Week

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October 15-21, 2017 is National Teen Driver Safety Week, a week to raise awareness of the tremendous risks teens confront on the roads; to remind teens to think twice before driving distracted; to remind teens of highway safety laws; to encourage safe driving practices; and to help inform parents and friends of ways they can help their teens be safer drivers.

One of the most important safety features for your teen driver is YOU. Parents are the Key to Safe Teen Driving. Make sure your young driver is aware of the Eight Danger Zones for Kids Behind the Wheel.  

Content source:  Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention

Breast Cancer Awareness Month


Other than skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women. Getting mammograms regularly can lower the risk of dying from breast cancer. The United States Preventive Services Task Force recommends that if you are 50 to 74 years old, be sure to have a screening mammogram every two years. If you are 40 to 49 years old, talk to your doctor about when to start and how often to get a screening mammogram.

Are you worried about the cost? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers free or low-cost mammograms. Find out if you qualify.

Get the facts provided by the CDC here.

Domestic Violence Awareness Month


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM).  DVAM evolved from the "Day of Unity" held in October 1981 and conceived by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The intent was to connect advocates across the nation who were working to end violence against women and their children.  Domestic violence thrives when we are silent; but if we take a stand and work together, we can end domestic violence.

Domestic Violence Facts

Information provided by

Fruits & Veggies – More Matters Month

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Eating fruits and vegetables has many health benefits. People who eat a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables can help lower their risk for:

  • Some types of cancer
  • Heart disease, including heart attack and stroke
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Obesity

However, many people don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables. •Fewer than 1 in 4 adults eat the recommended amount of fruits every day.•Fewer than 1 in 7 adults eat the recommended amount of vegetables every day.

The good news? Communities, health professionals, businesses, and families can work together to encourage people to eat more fruits and vegetables.

Make a difference: Spread the word about tips for healthy eating and encourage communities, organizations, families, and individuals to get involved.

How can Fruits & Veggies – More Matters Month make a difference?

We can use this month to raise awareness about the importance of getting enough fruits and vegetables.

Here are just a few ideas:

  • Spread the word about programs that support local agriculture
  • Encourage families to make small changes, like keeping fresh fruit or carrotsticks within easy reach
  • Motivate local restaurants, stores, and other businesses to provide quality foodsmade with fresh fruits and vegetables.

Information provided by

National Malnutrition Awareness Week

The purpose of National Malnutrition Awareness Week is to raise awareness in healthcare professionals to consider assessing and intervening earlier and for the public to realize that they need to ask about their nutrition status and advocate for optimal nutrition care as much as possible.

Malnutrition is also referred to as Nutritional Deficiencies.  

What are Nutritional Deficiencies?

Psychological Effect of Natural Disasters

With this year's hurricane season in full force, you may want to be aware of the Psychological effects of Natural disasters.  If you are experiencing any of these symptoms from previous disasters, contact the Care Center for an appointment.

Read more here and remember, even though the article referenced a tornado in Oklahoma, all disasters have the same psychological effects. 

Prevent Bullying Quick Tips for Parents

Because bullying can occur before, during or after school hours, the beginning of the school is a great time to learn how to prevent bullying.  While most reported bullying happens in the school building, a significant percentage also happens in places like on the playground or the bus.  It can also happen travelling to or from school, in the youth’s neighborhood, or on the Internet.

Bullying occurs when a child tries to hurt another child physically or emotionally. Kids who bully use their power (like being popular or physically strong) to control or hurt others. 

Research shows that parents and caregivers who spend at least 15 minutes a day talking with their child can build the foundation for a strong relationship and help prevent bullying

Learn more about how to prevent bullying.

Psoriasis Awareness Month

Each August, the National Psoriasis Foundation sponsors Psoriasis Awareness Month to raise awareness, encourage research and advocate for people with psoriasis. 

Psoriasis, an autoimmune disease, affects about 7.5 million people in the United States. 

Psoriasis is a disease that causes plaques, which are itchy or sore patches of thick, red, dry skin. 

Learn more about psoriasis at the Everyday Health Psoriasis Center, which includes great resources, stories, and information.


National Immunization Awareness Month

Immunization, or vaccination, helps prevent dangerous and sometimes deadly diseases. To stay protected against serious illnesses like the flu, measles, and pneumonia, adults need to get their shots – just like kids do. That's right - vaccines aren’t just for kids. People of all ages can get shots to protect them from serious diseases like flu, measles and pneumonia. It’s important to know which shots you need and when to get them.

Everyone age 6 months and older needs to get a flu vaccine every year. Other shots work best when they are given at certain ages.

Talk to your doctor or nurse to make sure that everyone in your family gets the shots they need.

Stay up to date on your shots.  Vaccines Work!

National Immunization Awareness Month

Make Summer Safe for Kids

Summer is a great time for kids to enjoy different indoor and outdoor activities. Whether they are young children or teens, kids can keep safe and healthy while they enjoy the summer fun.


The National Safe Kids Campaign estimates that every year, one in four kids ages 14 and younger will sustain an injury that requires medical attention. Forty percent of all injury-related emergency room visits and 42 percent of all injury deaths happen between May and August, they report, but it's not all bad news. We can keep kids free from about 90 percent of these accidents by educating ourselves and our kids on how to stay safe while still enjoying summer vacation.

July is Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month.

That's right, kids get arthritis.  It is a common misconception that only 'old' people are afflicted with arthritis.  Nearly 300,000 children in American have been diagnosed with juvenile arthritis. 

The form of arthritis that these kids experience is not the same as grandma's aches and pains.  These children suffer from various autoimmune forms of arthritis.  Their body's immune system is attacking their joints, causing swelling, stiffness and permanent damage.  This condition is extremely serious; if let untreated it can result in loss of mobility, blindness and even death.  

There are several different types of Juvenile Arthritis (JA), but the Arthritis Foundation says that "Although the various types of JA share many common symptoms, like pain, joint swelling, redness and warmth, each type of JA is distinct and has its own special concerns and symptoms."

Unfortunately, there is no cure for juvenile arthritis.  But, it is important to talk to your doctor to come up with the best treatment plan to manage the condition.  Usually, your doctor will recommend taking some medication that can relieve inflammation and control pain, as well as to incorporate healthy eating and physical activity into your lifestyle.  

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