Quit Smoking: It Not Only Kills, You Will Suffer Before You Die
More Than Just Lung Cancer
Quitting smoking is one of the most important things you can do for your health. The sooner you quit, the sooner your body can start to heal. You’ll feel better and have more energy to be active with your family and friends.
Smoking hurts almost every part of the body.
Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States.
For example, smoking causes:
Lung cancer and many other types of cancer
Heart disease and stroke
COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and other lung diseases
Secondhand smoke is a mix of the smoke that comes from your cigarette and the smoke that you breathe out. Secondhand smoke is dangerous and can cause health problems for the people around you.
In babies and children, breathing in secondhand smoke can cause:
Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)
Severe asthma attacks
In adults, breathing in secondhand smoke can cause:
How Can I Quit?
You can quit smoking.
Quitting smoking is hard, but millions of people have done it successfully. In fact, more than half of Americans who ever smoked have quit. You could be one of them!
Nicotine — the drug found in all tobacco products — is as addictive as heroin or cocaine. It’s the nicotine in cigarettes that causes cravings, or the strong feeling that you want to smoke. Remember — quitting isn’t easy, but it is possible!
Make a list of all the reasons you want to quit. For example, maybe you want to set a healthy example for your children and save money. Keep the list with you to remind yourself why quitting is worth it.
Set a quit date.
Pick a date that gives you enough time to get ready to quit — but make sure it’s soon enough that you don’t lose your motivation
Tell your family, friends, and coworkers about your quit date so they can support you
Make a quit plan.
Think about situations that might trigger you to smoke and plan how you’ll handle them without smoking
Right before your quit date, go through your house, car, and workplace to get rid of anything that has to do with smoking — throw away all your cigarettes, ashtrays, lighters, and matches
Under the Affordable Care Act, insurance plans must cover services to help people quit smoking. Depending on your insurance, you may be able to get these services at no cost to you. Check with your insurance company to find out more.
Many people try to quit more than once before they succeed. And it’s normal to have slips — especially in the first 3 months after quitting. If you’ve tried to quit before, think about what worked for you and what didn’t.
For example, being around other smokers can make it harder to quit. So can drinking alcohol.
If you’re having a hard time staying smoke-free, talk with your doctor about what types of counseling or medicines might help you. Remember, quitting is one of the most important things you can do to protect your health.
This information on smoking was adapted from materials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute.
Content Syndication Source
Reviewed by: Stephen D. Babb, MPH Office on Smoking and Health Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Brenna VanFrank, MD, MSPH Office on Smoking and Health Centers for Disease Control and Prevention