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Quitting smoking isn’t easy, but we all know by now that we should. Each year, more than 480,000 people die in the U.S. from tobacco use and exposure. [1] According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the following health benefits are directly associated with smoking cessation:

  • Lowered risk for lung cancer and many other types of cancer.
  • Reduced risk for heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease (narrowing of the blood vessels outside your heart).
  • Reduced heart disease risk within 1 to 2 years of quitting.
  • Reduced respiratory symptoms, such as coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath.
  • Reduced risk of developing some lung diseases.
  • Reduced risk for infertility in women of childbearing age. Women who stop smoking during pregnancy also reduce their risk of having a low birth weight baby. [2]

Make a Quit Plan

Because quitting is hard, having a plan in place to help you through the process has shown to be an effective process for smoking cessation. Here are a few pieces that may help you in putting together your own quit plan:

Choose a Quit Date

Make a date with the end of smoking. Pick a day in the near future, like this weekend, to call it quits. [3]

Tell People

Your friends and family want you to quit. Tell everyone so you have support and encouragement. Plus, they can be there for you if you need help.

Throw it All Out

Toss all of your cigarettes, matches, lighters, ashtrays, and everything else that’s going to remind you of smoking, or potentially lure you back in. Don’t save any of it.

Identify Your Smoking Triggers

When do you smoke? Are there times or things that make you more likely to light up? Make a list of all of your “triggers.” Knowing what might make you more likely to smoke makes it easier to identify what to avoid.

Reward Yourself

Give yourself something to look forward to; maybe a fun movie or night out with friends. Set milestones and then celebrate when you reach them.

Let Us Help

We at Horizon Family Medical Group want to help. Talk with your doctor here and develop a plan together. We can help answer any questions you might have and provide resources and help for those times when you need it. Call us at 1-800-859-0085 to make an appointment.

 

Resources:

  1. http://www.lung.org/stop-smoking/smoking-facts/
  2. https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/cessation/quitting/
  3. https://smokingcessationleadership.ucsf.edu/smokers
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