This Father’s Day, the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, a program of the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), encourages fathers to take the first step towards a healthier life for themselves and their families by quitting tobacco. The Helpline’s FREE resources are proven to increase your chances of quitting tobacco — and remaining tobacco free.

Among Oklahoman fathers, tobacco use remains a serious problem. 21% of Oklahoma men smoke, while almost 14% use smokeless tobacco. Male smokers put themselves at high risk for developing smoking-related health issues like lung cancer, stroke and heart disease. Plus, through secondhand smoke, they risk endangering the health of their children.

Shaun Pryor, of Edmond, smoked and dipped for many years – going through five to seven cigars and a can of dip per day. After having a heart attack in his early 30s, he quit tobacco. A few months later, however, he went right back.

“One day, my son found my cigar wrappers, and he said to me, ‘Dad, you need to quit. I want you to quit,’” Pryor said. “It hurt. I was embarrassed.

“I am not the ‘I need help guy,’ but I went to the doctor. When my doctor told me about the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, it opened up a new door. This time, I had people in my corner supporting me — which I didn’t expect. They were so encouraging, and they still are to this day. I couldn’t have done this by myself,” Pryor said.

To assist Oklahoma fathers on their quitting journey, the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline connects registrants with specially trained Quit Coaches who provide nonjudgmental support and help build customized Quit Plans. Oklahomans interested in quitting tobacco may also access free text and email support, along with free patches, gum or lozenges.

“With customizable, complimentary options and resources that can be tailored to your personal preferences and lifestyle, the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline is an invaluable resource for Oklahomans,” said Paola Klein, Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline coordinator. “This Father’s Day, consider calling the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline and give your family the gift of a healthy life.”

Father’s Day is also a time to think about the effects of tobacco use on loved ones. The influence and habits of a father on the lives of his children is unparalleled. Kids from families who smoke are twice as likely to become smokers themselves, despite the fact that most fathers don’t want to pass tobacco use on to their children.

For teens who struggle with tobacco use, help is here. My Life, My Quit offers free live text support, web chat and phone coaching for teens 13-17. To sign up for services, teens can simply text “Start My Quit” to 36072 or visit

This Father’s Day, consider a healthier life for you and your family by thinking about quitting tobacco. Call 1-800-QUIT NOW (1-800-784-8669) or visit to explore all the free services and resources available to Oklahomans. You can also connect with the Helpline through Facebook or by following us @OKhelpline on Twitter and Instagram.

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