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Friday, June 2, 2023

The Benefits of Quitting: Health Improvements After Tobacco Cessation

If you are a smoker, you may have heard many reasons to quit smoking. But did you know that quitting tobacco can also improve your health in many ways? In this blog post, we will explore some of the benefits of tobacco cessation and share some tips on how to quit successfully.

Tobacco cessation is the process of quitting smoking or using other forms of tobacco. Tobacco contains nicotine, a highly addictive substance that makes it hard to stop once you start. Smoking is very dangerous to your health, as it can cause various diseases such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and more.

Quitting tobacco can reduce your risk of these diseases and improve your overall well-being. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), quitting tobacco can have immediate and long-term benefits for your health. For example:

- Within 20 minutes of quitting, your blood pressure and heart rate drop to normal levels.

- Within 8 hours of quitting, the level of carbon monoxide in your blood drops to normal and the oxygen level increases.

- Within 24 hours of quitting, your risk of having a heart attack starts to decrease.

- Within 2 weeks to 3 months of quitting, your blood circulation and lung function improve.

- Within 1 to 9 months of quitting, you cough less and breathe easier.

- Within 1 year of quitting, your risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker.

- Within 5 years of quitting, your risk of stroke is similar to that of a non-smoker.

- Within 10 years of quitting, your risk of lung cancer is about half that of a smoker and your risk of other cancers decreases as well.

- Within 15 years of quitting, your risk of coronary heart disease is similar to that of a non-smoker.

Quitting tobacco can also improve your quality of life in other ways. For example, you can:

- Save money that you would otherwise spend on tobacco products.

- Enjoy food more as your sense of taste and smell improve.

- Have fresher breath and cleaner teeth.

- Have more energy and stamina for physical activities.

- Feel more confident and proud of yourself.

So how can you quit tobacco successfully? There are many methods and tools that can help you quit, such as:

- Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), which provides low doses of nicotine through patches, gum, lozenges or inhalers to reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

- Prescription medications, such as varenicline or bupropion, which block the effects of nicotine on the brain or reduce the urge to smoke.

- Counselling or coaching, which provides support and guidance from trained professionals or peers who can help you cope with the challenges of quitting.

- Self-help resources, such as books, websites, apps or online programs that offer information and tips on how to quit.

- Alternative therapies, such as hypnosis, acupuncture or laser therapy, which may help some people relax or reduce their desire to smoke.

The best way to quit tobacco is to find a method that works for you and suits your preferences and needs. You may also want to talk to your doctor or health care provider before starting any treatment or therapy. They can advise you on the best options for you and monitor your progress.

Quitting tobacco is not easy, but it is possible. Millions of people have quit smoking and so can you. You just need to make a decision, make a plan and stick to it. Remember that every cigarette you avoid is a step towards a healthier and happier life. You can do it!

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