The FINANCIAL - WHY: Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

WHY: Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

WHY: Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

The FINANCIAL -- Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions people can take to improve their health. This is true regardless of their age or how long they have been smoking.

Quitting smoking:

improves health status and enhances quality of life.

reduces the risk of premature death and can add as much as 10 years to life expectancy.

reduces the risk for many adverse health effects, including poor reproductive health outcomes, cardiovascular diseases, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and cancer.

benefits people already diagnosed with coronary heart disease or COPD.

benefits the health of pregnant women and their fetuses and babies.

reduces the financial burden that smoking places on people who smoke, healthcare systems, and society.

While quitting earlier in life yields greater health benefits, quitting smoking is beneficial to health at any age. Even people who have smoked for many years or have smoked heavily will benefit from quitting.1

Quitting smoking is the single best way to protect family members, coworkers, friends, and others from the health risks associated with breathing secondhand smoke.

Quitting smoking:

reduces the risk of developing COPD.

among those with COPD, slows the progression of COPD and reduces the loss of lung function over time.

reduces respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, sputum production, wheezing).

reduces respiratory infections (e.g. bronchitis, pneumonia).

may improve lung function, reduce symptoms, and improve treatment outcomes among persons with asthma.

Cardiovascular Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions people who smoke can take to reduce their risk for cardiovascular disease.

Quitting smoking:

reduces the risk of disease and death from cardiovascular disease.

reduces markers of inflammation and hypercoagulability.

leads to rapid improvement in high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels.

reduces the development of subclinical atherosclerosis and slows its progression over time.

reduces the risk of coronary heart disease with risk falling sharply 1-2 years after cessation and then declining more slowly over the longer term.

reduces the risk of disease and death from stroke with risk approaching that of never smokers after cessation.

reduces the risk of abdominal aortic aneurysm, with risk reduction increasing with time since cessation.

may reduce the risk of atrial fibrillation, sudden cardiac death, heart failure, venous thromboembolism, and peripheral arterial disease (PAD).

People already diagnosed with coronary heart disease also benefit from quitting smoking.

Quitting smoking after a diagnosis of coronary heart disease:

reduces the risk of premature death.

reduces the risk of death from heart disease,

reduces the risk of having a first heart attack or another heart attack.

Respiratory Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions people who smoke can take to reduce their risk for respiratory diseases.

woman with her arms over her head taking a deep breath outside

Cancer-Related Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking

Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions people who smoke can take to reduce their risk for cancer.

Quitting smoking reduces the risk of 12 different cancers, including:

acute myeloid leukemia (AML)
bladder
cancer of the lung
cervix
colon and rectum
esophagus
kidney
liver
mouth and throat (oral cavity and pharynx)
pancreas
stomach
voice box (larynx)
For cancer survivors, quitting smoking may improve prognosis and reduce risk of premature death.


Reproductive Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking
Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions women who smoke can take for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. The best time for women to quit smoking is before they try to get pregnant. But quitting at any time during pregnancy can benefit mother and baby’s health. 1

Quitting smoking:

before pregnancy or early in pregnancy reduces the risk for a small-for-gestational-age baby.
during pregnancy reduces the risk of delivering a low birth weight baby.
early in pregnancy eliminates the adverse effects of smoking on fetal growth.
before pregnancy or early in pregnancy may reduce the risk of preterm delivery.

Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking Over Time

Over time, people who quit smoking see many benefits to their health. After you smoke your last cigarette, your body begins a series of positive changes that continue for years.

Reduced risks refer to cessation in comparison to continued smoking.

24 hours Nicotine level in the blood drops to zero

Several days Carbon monoxide level in the blood drops to level of someone who does not smoke
1 to 12 months Coughing and shortness of breath decrease
1 to 2 years Risk of heart attack drops sharply
3 to 6 years Added risk of coronary heart disease drops by half
5 to 10 years Added risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, and voice box drops by half

Risk of stroke decreases

10 years Added risk of lung cancer drops by half after 10-15 years

Risk of cancers of the bladder, esophagus, and kidney decreases

15 years Risk of coronary heart disease drops to close to that of someone who does not smoke
20 years Risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, and voice box drops to close to that of someone who does not smoke
Risk of pancreatic cancer drops to close to that of someone who does not smoke
Added risk of cervical cancer drops by about half

Author: The FINANCIAL

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