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Stop Smoking and Stay Thin - Benefits of Quitting Smoking


Benefits of Quitting Smoking

Advantages of Being Smoke Free

Becoming a non-smoker has great health benefits for everyone. It helps men and women of any age breathe easier, it removes the danger of second hand smoke to those around you, including children, pregnant women and even your pets. Youíll be amazed to find that your body begins to recover from damage caused by cigarettes, and improve your health in as little as 20 minutes after laying down your last smoke!

Gain Better Health in Minutes

Once you have taken the steps to take smoking out of your life, your body will immediately begin to recover from the effects of tobacco. According to the National Cancer Institute, these are some of the changes and health benefits that occur over time:

  • After 20 minutes - your blood pressure and pulse rate return to normal
  • At 8 hours - nicotine and carbon monoxide levels in blood are reduced by half, oxygen levels return to normal
  • 24 hours - carbon monoxide will be eliminated from the body. Lungs start to clear out mucus and other smoking debris
  • 48 hours - ability to taste and smell is greatly improved
  • 72 hours - breathing becomes easier. Bronchial tubes begin to relax and energy levels increase
  • 2-12 weeks - circulation improves
  • 3-9 months - coughs, wheezing and breathing problems diminish as lung function is increased by up to 10%
  • 1 year - risk of heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker
  • 10 years - risk of lung cancer falls to half that of a smoker
  • 15 years - risk of heart attack falls to the same as someone who has never smoked.

Pregnancy: be smoke free for you and your child

Women who smoke, or are significantly exposed to second hand smoke, put their child at unnecessary risk for many adverse conditions. Smoking inhibits the growth rate of children, often denying them the oxygen they need to develop properly, causing retarded growth. This environment causes low birth weight and/or premature birth of the child.

After the child is born, infants exposed to smoke both in the womb and post natal may develop cognitive problems including poor memory, vocabulary and language skills. They may develop attention deficit disorder (ADD), as well as other behavioral characteristics including negativity, impulsivity and aggressiveness.

The good news is women who stop smoking before becoming pregnant or who quit smoking in the first 3 months of pregnancy can reverse the risk of low birth weight for the baby and reduce other pregnancy-associated risks.


Quit Smoking

Itís never too late to quit smoking

Some older adults may not realize the benefits of quitting smoking; however, smokers who quit before age 50 have half the risk of dying in the next 16 years compared with people who continue to smoke. By age 64, a former smokerís overall chance of death is similar to that of someone the same age who has never smoked. Older adults who quit smoking also have a reduced risk of dying from coronary heart disease and lung cancer. Additional, immediate benefits such as improved circulation, and increased energy and breathing capacity, are other good reasons for older adults to become smoke free.


Smoking and Your Home

Being a non smoker improves the quality of your home. When your home is smoke-free, it will smell much better and youíll spend less time, energy, and money cleaning your curtains, walls, windows, and mirrors. Check with your insurance company and many of your rates may be lowered. In addition, according to the National Fire Protections Association (www.nfpa.org) smoking cigarettes, cigars or other materials are the leading cause of fire deaths (807), and the third leading cause of fire injuries (2,193) in the United States. Roughly one of every four fire deaths in the 1999 was caused by smoking. By quitting you will reduce smoking dangers in all facets of your life, and by quitting smoking you're setting a good example. You're showing those around you that a life without cigarettes is a longer, healthier, happier life. Donít wait, start today!

Source: National Institutes of Health