According to the CDC and the NIH
Tobacco use is the most common preventable cause of death. About half of the people who don't quit smoking will die of smoking-related problems. Quitting smoking is important for your health.
Tobacco smoke contains a deadly mix of more than 7,000 chemicals; hundreds are toxic, and about 70 can cause cancer. Tobacco smoking increases the risk for serious health problems, numerous diseases, and death.
People who stop smoking greatly reduce their risk for disease and premature death. Although the health benefits are greater for people who stop at earlier ages, quitting is beneficial at all ages.
Soon after you quit, your circulation begins to improve, and your blood pressure starts to return to normal. Your sense of smell and taste return, and it's easier for you to breathe. In the long term, giving up tobacco can help you live longer. Your risk of getting cancer decreases with each year you stay smoke-free.
Quitting is not easy. You may have short-term effects such as weight gain, irritability, and anxiety. Some people try several times before they succeed. There are many ways to quit smoking. Some people stop "cold turkey." Others benefit from step-by-step manuals, counseling, or medicines/products that help reduce nicotine addiction. Your health care provider can help you find the best way for you to quit.
Stopping smoking is associated with the following health benefits:
- Lowered risk for lung cancer and many other types of cancer.
- Reduced risk for coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease.
- Reduced coronary heart disease risk within 1 to 2 years of quitting.
- Reduced respiratory symptoms, such as coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. The rate of decline in lung function is slower among people who quit smoking than among those who continue to smoke.
- Reduced risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), one of the leading causes of death in the United States.
- Reduced risk for infertility in women of reproductive age. Women who stop smoking during pregnancy also reduce their risk of having a low birth weight baby.
- Stopping smoking prior to surgery can decrease your risk of anesthesia related complications and decrease risk of delayed or poor wound healing.
The Healing Time Line (Cancer.org & American Lung Association)
The following links may provide helpful information to aide you in quitting smoking: