According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), smoking causes about 90 percent of all lung cancer related deaths, approximately 80 percent of all deaths from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and it doubles the risk of strokes and other heart related diseases.
If you’re an avid smoker and trying to quit this deadly habit, then here’s some motivation for you to quit smoking.
Health Effects of Smoking
A general misconception that surrounds us is that smoking is harmful for our hearts and respiratory systems only. This isn’t true. However, health effects of smoking are not limited to any specific disease or condition.
Smoking can cause type 2 diabetes, and makes it difficult to control sugar levels. It also affects bones and smokers are at an increased risk for broken bones. Furthermore, smoking can also be a cause of reduced fertility in men, as it affects their sperm count. Also, it increases the probability of birth defects and miscarriages. Moreover, smoking makes it harder for women to conceive and causes a lot of issues during pregnancy, labor and delivery.
Smoking affects almost every organ in your body and can also develop different types of cancer as well. For instance, it can cause cancer in your liver, kidney, pancreas, stomach, esophagus, colon and rectum, lungs, blood, bladder etc.
The most common smoking-related illnesses are heart and lung diseases. Smoking forms blood clots, which interrupt the blood flow and increase the risk of a stroke. According to CDC, smokers are 12 to 13 times more likely to die from COPD as compared to non-smokers.
Ways to Quit Smoking
Being a physical addiction and psychological habit, quitting smoking is tough. However, if right steps are taken in the right direction, then you can certainly quit smoking. Here’s what you should do to quit smoking:
Applying nicotine patches, using nicotine lozenges, or employing any other type of nicotine replacement therapy can help. If you’re a chain smoker, chewing nicotine gums can also serve as a nicotine replacement therapy. Your body is addicted to nicotine, thus the urge to smoke. When you replace tobacco with these forms of nicotine, your nicotine intake will reduce. Keep tapering the nicotine amount till you no longer desire it.
Cope with Unpleasant Feelings
Smoking isn’t the only way to handle overwhelming and unpleasant feelings. This can be done by exercising, mediating, spending time with your loved ones, venting out your feelings with your partners, or simply by relaxing. Learn to deal with the stressful situations of life without the need to smoke.
People, places and situations are the major triggers. Avoid all these triggers when you’re trying to quit smoking. Spend time with non-smokers and try not to visit your ‘smoke partners’. Eat healthy and change your routine so that you feel fresh and do not feel the need to smoke. And don’t forget to throw away your lighters, ash trays and remaining cigarettes.
Prepare A Recovery Timetable To Quit Smoking
We all know that quitting this bad habit isn’t easy at all. But now that you’ve decided to take this bold step, don’t let anything ruin it. Prepare a smoking recovery timetable, which will help you lead a smoke and tobacco free life.
- Prepare a plan and stick to it. If you think you cannot quit without nicotine replacement, include them as part of your plan, but make sure to reduce their intake with time.
- Keep yourself busy. Not usually paid attention to, but this step can do wonders. Make sure that you do not have free time to light a cigarette.
- Stay positive. Think of the benefits of quitting smoking and how it will impact your life and your family in a positive manner.
- Don’t shy away when you need help. Always ask for support from your friends and family during your tough time. They’re always there for you.
Benefits of Quitting Smoking
The benefits of quitting smoking are instant.
Within 20 minutes of your last cigarette, your heart rate starts going back to normal. It takes only a couple of hours for your blood pressure to normalize.
Just after 24 hours of quitting smoking, you’re at a lower risk of developing coronary heart disease. You will experience an improvement in your smelling and tasting abilities within 48 hours.
After you’ve quit smoking for a month, the cilia inside your lungs begin to repair which decrease cough and shortness of breath caused due to smoking.
And one of the most valuable long term smoking recovery benefit is increased life expectancy.
So, what are you waiting for? Quit smoking today, and enjoy a long, stress-free and healthy life.