Smoking-cessation center expands to larger office

PHOTO BY CHRISTOPHER TOMLINSON—Dan McGhee with DC Stop Smoking Center , 533 Bogart La, Unit E.Art to go with Emily’s story.Sent as 090211 DC stop smoking.

DC Stop Smoking Center will reopen in a new location Wednesday at 533 Bogart Lane, Unit E.

The smoking-cessation business opened in June 2009 in a small office at 844 Grand Ave. Referrals from clients pumped up business over the last two years and led owners Dan and Cherlyn McGhee to select a new, larger location. The McGhees also opened a Denver office eight months ago.

The center, which gets the first two letters of its name from a physician code for discontinued, offers Auriculotherapy. The treatment lasts 10 minutes and involves administering electrical stimulation to points on the outside of a person’s ear. Cherlyn McGhee said the slight shocks reopen nerve receptors that shut down when a person becomes addicted to cigarettes.

“It minimizes or takes away (nicotine) cravings like they’ve never smoked before,” she said.

The McGhees package the $120 treatment with a 20-minute counseling session on how to change an ex-smoker’s routine to live without cigarettes. Patients who feel the urge to smoke can call the center for free advice for the rest of their lives.

Eighty-five percent of patients only need the treatment once to stop smoking, Cherlyn McGhee said.

One treatment was enough for Grand Junction resident Nancy Sours. She said she smoked for 52 years and was down to half a pack of cigarettes most days before she sought treatment a little more than two months ago.

“It’s the weirdest thing, but it’s true,” Sours said. “I’m just so excited about it, it’s unreal.”

Sours said all but two of the many friends she has referred to the center have been able to stop smoking because of the treatment. She has been able to talk herself out of wanting a cigarette and said that ability to break routine was just as important as the treatment’s ability to fight cravings.

“It also has to do with your mind. You have to really want to do this, and you have to believe in it,” she said.

McGhee admits even she was skeptical when she first heard about the treatment. She was working in a dental office in St. Louis, down the hall in an office building from a center that offered Auriculotherapy. The owner of the center asked her to work there part-time.

“When I first started working there, I thought, ‘They do something to people’s ears, and they stop smoking? Right,” she said.

Part of her job was to call patients and check their progress. She was surprised to hear long-time smokers say they were no longer smoking and had no urge to smoke. McGhee, herself a “closet smoker” at the time, said she tried the treatment and has not smoked since.

Cherlyn McGhee moved to Grand Junction in 2004 after meeting and marrying Dan McGhee. He encouraged her to open an Auriculotherapy center here. When Dan lost his long-time job as a pharmaceutical representative with Pfizer, the couple decided to finally make the center a reality.

The pair said they always planned to open an office in Denver because it has a larger population. They don’t plan to open centers in any other cities, but they hope to help others do so.

“We’d like to help other people get these centers started across the country,” Cherlyn McGhee said.


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