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Benefits of Smoking Cessation
To start, it is a known fact that there are many benefits after one quits smoking. For example, it lowers your chances of coronary heart disease. It also lowers your chances of lung diseases and kidney failures too. Additionally, it also lowers your chances of infections and cancer as well. The skin becomes softer and the facial wrinkles cease to exist. Smoking cessation also improves your sex life and builds more stamina to do physical activities. It reduces the chances of getting osteoporosis, which is a debilitating condition that weakens the bones. In sum, quitting smoking will definitely improve your health and the effects will be visible from the first day. This article will outline how to quit smoking and tips on how to stop smoking.
How to Quit:
Follow the acronym “START”. Thus, taking steps towards quitting the habit will help you immensely.
S = Set a quit date.
T = Tell people around you, friends and family, that you have quit smoking.
A = Anticipate and plan for the problems you may face while quitting.
R = Remove all packets of cigarettes from your reach. Also, remove other tobacco products as well.
T = Talk to a professional or one who has successfully quit, about getting help.
Composition of Smoke:
Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals. Additionally, the chemicals include over 50 known causes of cancer or carcinogens and other poisons.
Nicotine is the main chemical that makes you addicted to cigarettes and also tobacco. It enters the bloodstream and stimulates the brain. Since nicotine is addictive, you will continue to smoke as a result. The urges arise when the blood level of nicotine falls. As a result, it leads to withdrawal symptoms in the person who is quitting. The withdrawal symptoms can be any or all of the following. For example:
- Increased irritability
- Increased Hunger
- Difficulty in concentrating
These symptoms get relieved once a cigarette is lit, which defines nicotine addiction. In fact, withdrawal symptoms appear within the first hour of quitting and peak after about 24 hours. After this, the symptoms begin to ease out and totally cease in about 2-4 weeks.
The main reason few smokers succeed in quitting is the powerful nicotine addiction of the body. It is also due to easy access to tobacco products as well. For chronic smokers, the use of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) results in higher success compared to stopping abruptly. E-cigarettes or a smoking cessation medicine also results in higher success.
Tar in smoke
Tar is the blackish deposit on the lungs which get into the blood vessels. It can be carried to other parts of the body too.
Carbon monoxide is a gas. In brief, it reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity of the blood. It is harmful in pregnant women who smoke or are exposed to passive smoking.
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Smoking in pregnancy
Smoking in pregnancy increases the risk of the following. Examples include:
- Miscarriage and stillbirth within the first week of life. The risk increases by about one-third if the mother smoked.
- Complications of pregnancy. This includes problems such as bleeding during pregnancy and detachment of the ‘afterbirth’ (placenta). Additionally, it also includes premature birth and ectopic pregnancy as well.
- Congenital defects in the baby, such as cleft palate, asthma, etc.
- Low birth weight. Babies born to women who smoke are on average 8 oz lighter than babies born to comparable non-smoking mothers. As a result, premature and low-birth-weight babies are more prone to illness and infections.
Children, non-smoking adults, and unborn babies can all be affected by your smoke. Children who live in a household with a smoker are more likely to inhale smoke and therefore develop various health problems than children who don’t.
Dirty side effects of Smoking:
- Firstly, smoking is an expensive habit.
- Secondly, the smell of tobacco spoils the smoker’s breath, clothes, hair, and skin. Furthermore, the entire house smells of stale tobacco as well. Non-smokers find this smell is obnoxious and unpleasant.
- Thirdly, the smoker’s sense of taste and sense of smell are dulled. There’s reduced enjoyment of food and drinks as a result.
Benefits in the long run:
The benefits outweigh the troubles of kicking the habit of smoking from your life. The major benefits include, for example:
- You will look younger and your life expectancy goes up.
- Your health improves, with a sense of renewed vitality.
- Lots of money and time saved by not spending it on cigarettes
Tips on How to Stop Smoking:
The first step towards this is to believe in yourself. Smoking is a gained habit and can be reversed easily. As smoking is very addictive, it usually overpowers a person’s will power. But there are lots of medications and methods to help you to stop. Such as Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and E-cigarettes. Furthermore, Varenicline (Champix®) and Bupropion (Zyban®) are also medications that you stop smoking as well.
Benefits of Stopping Smoking
Once a person quits smoking or use of tobacco, it uplifts his or her health and lifestyle as a result. There is a reduction in chances of getting serious lifestyle diseases as well. Diseases such as heart disease and cancer. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and peripheral arterial disease are also less likely as well. Further, stopping smoking leads to other benefits like:
- Improvement in fertility problems like erectile dysfunction
- Improvement in eyesight
- The skin becomes more radiant
- The gums and teeth get healthier
- There’s no bad breath or yellow teeth
- The risk of pregnancy complications reduces manifold
- The taste of food and drinks improves
- You feel better about yourself
The sooner you stop smoking, the greater the reduction in the risk of getting serious diseases. If you stop before the age of 50, your risk of premature death is the same as that of a non-smoker.
|Time after Quitting your last Cigarette||Visible Health Benefit|
|72 hours||Breathing becomes smoother and easier. Bronchial tubes begin to relax and energy levels increase. Oxygen levels in the body improve.|
|1 month||Skin appearance improves. Increased stamina.|
|3-6 months||Cough, wheezing, and breathing problems cease. Lung function increases by up to 10%.|
|1 year||The risk of a heart attack falls by 50% compared to that of a smoker.|
|10 years||The risk of lung cancer falls by 50% compared to that of a smoker.|
|15 years||Risk of heart attack falls to the same level as that of a non-smoker.|