An estimated 400,000 Americans die each year from diseases directly related to smoking or other tobacco use. New long-term studies indicate that about half of all regular tobacco users die of nicotine-related diseases. Nicotine addiction is responsible for 1 in 5 U.S. deaths and costs the economy at least $100 billion in health care costs and lost productivity. The U.S. Surgeon General has warned that tobacco use is the major preventable cause of lung cancer, heart disease, stroke, emphysema, and many other health problems.
Good reasons for quitting:
Tips to help you quit:
Quit and save yourself money:
By considering these five points, you’ll be able to create a strategy for how to quit smoking, tobacco, and vaping:
Set a date to quit and stick to it. It may be helpful to cut down on the number of cigarettes you smoke each day for a week or two before your quit date.
Tell your family, friends and coworkers you are quitting. Discuss your decision with your doctor or other health care provider.
When you first quit, try changing your daily routine. Doing things differently may distract you from urges to smoke or chew. Plan something enjoyable to do each day to reward yourself and reduce your stress level.
Talk with your health care provider about which medication would work best for you.
Many people have to “practice” quitting a few times before they break the habit for good.
Once you quit smoking, your body will begin to recover almost immediately. Here’s a general timeline of how your body will benefit from quitting smoking:
As quickly as 20 minutes after you smoke your last cigarette, your heart rate will return to normal, your blood pressure will lower, and your circulation may start to improve.
During this time, your body will begin to cleanse itself of the excess carbon monoxide it accumulated from the cigarettes. When your body’s carbon monoxide levels return to normal, oxygen levels will increase.
Just 24 hours after quitting smoking, your blood pressure will begin to drop, decreasing your risk of heart disease. You’ll also be able to breathe easier during exercise and physical activity.
During this time, your lung function will begin to improve. You’ll likely experience less coughing and shortness of breath. As a result, athletic endurance will increase.
At this point, your risk of coronary disease will decrease by half and will continue to decrease.
Five years after quitting smoking, your arteries and blood vessels will begin to widen. This widening means you’ll be less prone to blood clots, lowering your risk of stroke.
After a decade without cigarettes, your chances of developing lung, mouth, throat, or pancreatic cancer are significantly reduced.
At this point, your risk of death from smoking-related causes decreases to the level of a person who has never smoked in their life.
There are several medications that can ease the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal and help you quit using tobacco or vaping. Ask your physician for advice about which medication is right for you.
The patch releases a steady amount of nicotine into the body over time. It should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing and may not be appropriate if you have a heart condition.
Nicotine gum contains enough nicotine to reduce the urge to smoke. Gum users may gradually wean themselves off the gum over the course of three months. Nicotine gum should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing and may not be appropriate if you have a heart condition.
The nicotine inhaler consists of a plastic cylinder containing a cartridge that delivers nicotine when you puff on it. Although similar in appearance to a cigarette, the inhaler delivers nicotine into the mouth, not the lung, and the nicotine enters the body much more slowly than the nicotine in cigarettes. The nicotine inhaler is available only by prescription.
Nicotine nasal spray delivers nicotine to the nasal membranes. Nicotine from sprays reaches the bloodstream faster than any other NRT products. It is available by prescription
This non-nicotine pill was approved in 1997 to help smokers quit. The drug, available by prescription only, is also sold as an antidepressant under the name Wellbutrin.
A variety of tools, from information to one-on-one counseling to support groups, are available to assist you in your decision to stop using tobacco products, including vapes. Try contacting one of the following organizations for additional information, suggestions, and support: