Studies show that smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in Great Britain with almost 80,000 deaths attributed to the habit in 2013 alone. The most provoking word in this statistic is ‘preventable’. Many of these deaths could have been avoided with some better decisions and healthier choices. Therefore if you are a smoker, perhaps it is time to put down the cigarette and take steps towards a healthier lifestyle. With the legions of benefits it’ll bring, there will be no looking back.
Benefits of quitting smoking
Often the most immediate and refreshing effect of quitting is the vast improvement to personal hygiene and appearance:
- The smell of smoke lingers and clings to you so once you quit, your breath and general body odour will smell much better.
- The departure of tobacco from your life will also stop the tell-tale yellow staining of teeth and nails that a smoker often has.
- Quitting has been shown to return your youthful visage (to an extent, of course) as it has been found to slow facial ageing and delay the appearance of wrinkles.
There is no dispute on the fact that smoking deteriorates health in countless ways. To name but a few:
You’ll find breathing comes much easier once you denounce the habit as your lung capacity will gradually begin to increase.
Blood circulation also improves greatly. This will have a domino effect on your overall health as exercise becomes a less tasking activity.
One of the most substantial benefits of quitting is the, quite literal, new lease of life. Complications of smoking such as heart disease, chronic bronchitis and lung cancer are much less likely to take your life early as they do to half of long term smokers.
Studies show that stress levels decrease after giving up smoking. Many smokers cite stress relief as their reason for smoking but withdrawal from nicotine between cigarettes can heighten feelings of stress.
Lastly, it is not only the smoker themselves that benefits from quitting. Do you have loved ones? If so, make the home a safer and healthier place by taking away the effect of second-hand smoke. Passive smoking increases the risk of lung cancer, heart disease and stroke. If you are a parent, your child is at double the risk of contracting chest illnesses, wheezing and asthma.
How you can quit
The numerous benefits of quitting are reason enough to kick this habit. Nevertheless, smoking is an addiction like any other and for many it is hard to find the will power to quit.
Rather than quitting cold turkey, you may find it easier and more of a long term solution to use nicotine replacement products such as patches, gum and lozenges. Talk to your GP about Nicotine Replacement Therapy and other treatments available to get more information or a prescription.
Many quitters also switch to E-cigarettes before giving up nicotine completely. Although these aren’t without harm, studies carried out by Public Health England have found that E-cigarettes are 95% safer than normal cigarettes as they don’t contain many of the toxic chemicals present in normal cigarettes.
It is often helpful to go through the journey with other people in the same position as you as well as trained advisors. By joining a local stop smoking service, you can meet with a local group of quitters every week and benefit from 1-to-1 support from a stop smoking advisor.
If you stop for 28 days, you are 5 times more likely to kick the habit for good so this Stoptober, take the leap and chuck the cigarette pack. Your body will thank you.
Contact us at Pharmacy Direct to find out more about how we could help you stop smoking