The moment you quit smoking, your health improves. It’s never too late to stop.
Could this be the year you quit smoking for good?
The Great American Smokeout is coming up on Nov. 15, which may be just the push you need to stop smoking once and for all. Although it won't be easy, you stand to gain several benefits by quitting, no matter how old you are or how long you have smoked. Everyone can improve his or her health by quitting smoking now.
Smoke cuts your life short and increases your risk of certain diseases. Quit smoking now, and you will notice fewer illnesses — including minor colds — and you'll feel healthier, the American Cancer Society says.
Some of the benefits kick in right away, according to the American Heart Association and the U.S. Surgeon General:
- Twenty minutes after quitting: Your blood pressure and heart rate recover from a cigarette-induced spike.
- Twelve hours after quitting: Carbon monoxide levels in your blood return to normal.
- Two weeks later: Your circulation and lung function shows signs of improvement.
- Between one and nine months after quitting: You can breathe clearer and deeper, and coughing and shortness of breath diminishes; you cough without hacking.
- One year after quitting: You cut your risk of coronary heart disease by 50 percent.
- Five to 15 years after quitting: Your risk of stroke is similar to that of a nonsmoker.
- A decade of smoke-free living: Your lung cancer death rate is about half that of a person who has continued to smoke. Your risk of other cancers — such as throat, mouth, esophagus, bladder, cervix and pancreas — also decreases.
So it's never too late to decide to quit. Plantation General Hospital is here to help you fight your smoking addiction and start down the road to a healthier life. If you need to find a doctor, you can search by physician online or get a referral through Consult-A-Nurse, our free healthcare referral service, at at 1-888-256-7724.