8 Reasons to Quit Smoking
You absolutely must listen to that voice in the back of your head that reminds you, every now and then, to stop smoking. Granted, the journey to quitting smoking is not a breeze. However, with a will to quit smoking comes a way, and, with this, comes eight reasons why you must stop smoking as soon as you possibly can.
The eight reasons to quit smoking include the following:
1 - Smoking makes you look older.
Regular smokers are more prone to develop skin changes such as leathery skin and deep wrinkles. Smoking causes biochemical changes in the body that accelerate the aging process. Smoking, for example, deprives living skin tissue of oxygen leading blood vessels to tighten. Therefore, blood has a harder time getting to your organs, including your skin. In an interesting study44 conducted on twins, findings reveal that the differences in skin-aging among a smoking sibling and their twin are remarkable and could encourage the use of cessation aids to stop smoking.
2 - Smoking hinders your physical abilities45.
Many smokers claim that their ability to accomplish simple things, like climbing a flight of stairs or participating in sports activities, has deteriorated with time. Even young athletes in excellent physical shape do not perform as well if they smoke because smoking forces the lungs and heart to work harder over time.
3 - Smoking is not cost-effective46!
It's no surprise that smoking is prohibitively expensive if you're a smoker. The cost of a pack of cigarettes varies widely depending on where you buy them with an average cost between 5 USD to 10 USD per pack.
4 - Smoking impacts your sense of smell and taste47.
Smokers' senses are also dulled; smell and taste, in particular, are harmed when they smoke. Many meals don't taste as good to smokers as they did before they started smoking, but it's the loss of the sense of smell that limits their capacity to taste. Inhaling the heated gasses of cigarette smoke is hazardous to one's health. Some smokers notice that their food doesn't taste as good as it used to, although the change can be subtle, making it difficult to identify. When you stop smoking, your senses return quickly.
5 - Smoking makes you smell like an ashtray.
The smell of cigarettes is unmistakable, and it is not one that many people enjoy. Smokers are frequently self-conscious about the odor of smoke on their clothing and hair. Most smokers are particularly sensitive to the scent of their breath48.
6 - Smoking turns your teeth yellow and creates dental plaque49.
The nicotine and tar in tobacco cause teeth discoloration, which is one of the side effects of smoking. It can quickly turn your teeth yellow, and heavy smokers frequently remark that their teeth are nearly brown after years of smoking.
7 - Smoking hurts others, too.
Secondhand smokers suffer a great deal from your smoking habits. Passive smokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke are at an increased risk of lung cancer and cardiovascular diseases50. Secondhand smoking exposure has also been linked to type 2 diabetes. Moreover, cigarettes continue to be a leading source of accidental fires and deaths.
8 - Smoking leads to death51!
One of the most prominent reasons to quit smoking is because it actually leads to death. Heart disease, stroke, cancer, and chronic bronchitis, among other diseases, are all made more likely by smoking. It is well known that smoking is the leading cause of preventable mortality around the world.
Also, read to know more on the 6 side effects of Tobacco consumption, here.
Symptoms of Quitting Smoking52
Nicotine, present in your cigarette, has a pleasant effect on the brain, but it is just momentary. As a result, you take out another cigarette. To feel good, you need more nicotine, and so you smoke more. You will endure painful mental and physical changes if you try to stop smoking—you need to know that these changes are part of the quitting smoking process. These are called nicotine withdrawal symptoms and include:
Strong cravings, anxiety, irritation, restlessness, problems concentrating, depressed mood, frustration, wrath, increased appetite, insomnia, constipation, or diarrhea.
Quitting Smoking Timeline53
Now, the good news is that even if you've been a smoker for a long time, the negative effects of smoking can still be reversed, and you enjoy health benefits from the moment you stop smoking until decades later. Here is the quitting smoking timeline:
- 20 minutes after you quit smoking: Your pulse returns to normal and so does your blood pressure. Bronchial tubes will have better activity.
- 8 hours after you quit smoking: Your carbon monoxide levels will return to normal.
- 24 hours after you quit smoking: You have just decreased your risk of heart attacks.
- 48 hours after you quit smoking: Your damaged nerve ends regrow.
- 72 hours after you quit smoking: You will start breathing more easily.
- One week after you quit smoking: Your circulation and oxygenation improves, making you walk easier.
- Six months after you quit smoking: You are able to better handle stressful events.
- One year after you quit smoking: In terms of capacity and function, your lungs will have improved dramatically.
The list just keeps going on and on. At 15 years, your risk of heart attack and stroke has dropped to the same level as someone who has never smoked. While it takes time to reverse the consequences of smoking, 15 years smoke-free is a significant achievement for your health and overall well-being.
Also read 10 tips on how to quit smoking, here.
With so many health advantages to quitting smoking, now is the best time to do it. You might begin by developing a strategy and obtaining necessary assistance or cessation aids. You can seek the help of your doctor, family, and friends in your efforts to live a healthy, smoke-free life. Make sure to savor each step along the way — you're deserving of it.
Our aim at Nicorette is to help you quit smoking for good. Find more blogs from our medical professionals and understand why you should embrace your smoke-free journey with us.
- 44 Doshi, D. N., Hanneman, K. K., & Cooper, K. D. (2007). Smoking and skin aging in identical twins. Archives of dermatology, 143(12), 1543-1546.
- 45 Degens, H., Gayan-Ramirez, G., & van Hees, H. W. (2015). Smoking-induced skeletal muscle dysfunction. From evidence to mechanisms. American journal of respiratory and critical care medicine, 191(6), 620-625.
- 46 Elixhauser, A. (1990). The costs of smoking and the cost-effectiveness of smoking-cessation programs. Journal of public health policy, 11(2), 218-237.
- 47 Vennemann, M. M., Hummel, T., & Berger, K. (2008). The association between smoking and smell and taste impairment in the general population. Journal of Neurology, 255(8), 1121-1126.
- 48 Kropp, R. Y., & Halpern-Felsher, B. L. (2004). Adolescents’ beliefs about the risks involved in smoking “light” cigarettes. Pediatrics, 114(4), e445-e451.
- 49 Vellappally, S., Fiala, Z., Smejkalová, J., Jacob, V., & Somanathan, R. (2007). Smoking-related systemic and oral diseases. ACTA MEDICA-HRADEC KRALOVE-, 50(3), 161.
- 50 Khoramdad, M., Vahedian‐azimi, A., Karimi, L., Rahimi‐Bashar, F., Amini, H., & Sahebkar, A. (2020). Association between passive smoking and cardiovascular disease: A systematic review and meta‐analysis. IUBMB life, 72(4), 677-686.
- 51 Al-Ibrahim, M. S., & Gross, J. Y. (1990). Tobacco use. Clinical Methods: The History, Physical, and Laboratory Examinations. 3rd edition.
- 52 https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/nicotine-dependence/symptoms-causes/syc-20351584
- 53 https://www.healthline.com/health/what-happens-when-you-quit-smoking#takeaway