Smokers often hear of the negative effects of their smoking habit (You can read here) but what of the benefits of giving up smoking? Those who are constantly barraged with bad news tend to learn to block it out. Maybe it’s time to start letting smokers know about the benefits of giving up smoking instead. It just may get their attention.
So what are the benefits of giving up smoking? Well, they are many, and here are just a few that might get smokers thinking about giving up their cigarettes.
• After just 20 minutes of having the last cigarette, a smoker will have lower blood pressure and a lower pulse rate.
• After just 24 hours after the last cigarette, a smoker decreases the chances of having a heart attack.
• After two days, the sense of taste and smell begin to return to normal. Food is much more enjoyable. Also damaged nerve endings begin to regrow.
• Within the first year many other improvements happen. Circulation improves, lungs begin to function better and breathing becomes easier and stamina improves. Also the coughing associated with smoking (knows as a smoker’s cough) and the sinus congestion that accompanies it will greatly decrease.
• After that first year, a now ex-smoker has decreased the risk of having coronary heart disease by one half.
• Looks will improve. Bags under the eyes will begin to disappear, skin will become a more healthy color, hands and nails will lose their tobacco stains, and teeth stop continuing to become a deeper shade of brown or yellow.
Some benefits take longer than a year to achieve, but the longer a person continues to stay away from cigarettes completely, the healthier he or she will become. The longer term befits of quitting are:
• A reduced risk of stroke after five years or more. Some people can even reduce their risk to the same as a person who has never smoked.
• After ten or more years, the risk of lung cancer may be decreased by half as much.
• Also after ten or more years, the possibility of contracting some cancers associated with smoking such as mouth, esophagus, and pancreas decreases.
• After fifteen years of quitting smoking, the ex-smokers risk of death goes back to about the same as someone’s who has never smoked. The possibility of coronary heart diseases or lung cancer decrease greatly putting them on par with life long non-smokers.
These are just the major health highlights that can be achieved by someone who successfully quits smoking. Most smokers make several false starts when they try to quit, but that is no reason to give up trying.
There are so many methods available today for those who are trying to quit from the good old fashioned cold turkey that really does work for some, to alternative methods such as hypnosis and acupuncture, to doctor approved drugs that help smokers cope with the stress and anxiety that can accompany quitting.