18 Reasons to Quit Smoking
Times are changing, and as far as smoking goes, it is for the better. In the 1940’s, people thought that smoking was good for you. The more studies that are done, the more they show that smoking is capable of killing the smoker and the people who suffer from second-hand smoking. There are plenty of reasons to quit smoking.
To stop smoking (or any habit, really) you might need motivation other than simple fun facts. There are all sorts of reasons, you just need to find the one that fits you. Whether it is to live longer for your kids, to stop your kids from suffering the second-hand smoke, to not smell for a loved one, the choices are almost endless, just find one for you.
Talk to your friends and or family if you plan on quitting smoking. Any addiction is hard to beat by yourself. So talk to your family and ask them to help you. Have them remind you of the pros when you are craving a smoke, have them distract you from the withdrawal.
Reasons to Quit Smoking
Better Health Over Time
The longer you go without smoking, the better your health gets. You may not feel, but just in 20 minutes, your blood pressure and heart lower. Within 12 hours, the carbon monoxide level in your blood returns to what it should it be.
After two or three weeks, your lung function improves, your circulation gets better, and your chances of a heart attack are lower. Even just within the first month you will be breathing easier and coughing less.
By within the first five years, your chances of various cancers and heart diseases drop. In a decade, your chances of pancreatic cancer and kidney cancer drop, as well as your risk of dying of heart-lung cancer. In another five years, the coronary heart disease risk is as low as a non-smoker’s.
Not Smoking Saves Money
It can save you lots of money to stop smoking. A pack of cigarettes costs at least $5.51. It varies from state to state because of different taxes. Not only do they tax cigarettes more heavily, but the cost also depends on the brand, where the tobacco was from, and the length of the cigarettes.
There are now laws in place prohibiting smoking inside. Would it not be nice to be hanging out with friends or with a significant other an not need to step outside or even walk a distance to have a smoke every 20 to 30 minutes? Not to mention if you are in college since more and more campuses are going smoke-free altogether.
The Dangers of Secondhand Smoke
Some people doubt the true effects of secondhand smoke, but they are there, and they are dangerous. Smoking around children, because of how fragile their lungs are, can be more susceptible to ear infections and chest colds. Smoking near a pregnant woman can affect the mother as well as the fetus. The child is more likely to have asthma, brain defects, be born early, and die from sudden infant death syndrome.
Improve your Tastebuds
Anatomically, your nose, ears, and throat are all connected. Because you intake the smoke through your mouth and release it through your nose and mouth, your senses of tastes and smell will improve if you stop smoking. Also, if you have trouble with hearing, quitting smoking will do wonders for your ears as well.
The smell, as well as not being able to breathe well, can stop you from getting a good night’s sleep. Damage done to your lungs can also make you snore which can wake you up. So between the lack of the smoke smell and snoring less, you should be able to get more sleep.
Alternatives to Smoking
Some people can quit smoking cold turkey, many cannot use the method because of the withdrawal. Instead of just dropping it, wean yourself off. Lessen the number of cigarettes you smoke in a week, go down to an E-cigarettes or nicotine patches and then keep weaning yourself off of those until you are done completely.
Instead of smoking, swap it out from something healthy. So, if you start craving a cig, eat a snack like an apple, get some gum, or eat some veggies.
Nicotine is Addictive
The nicotine is what you want to avoid. Nicotine is the drug that is put in cigarettes that make it so hard to quit. The nicotine that is in the cigarettes has been found to be just as addictive as cocaine or heroin. Nicotine gets to your brain in less than 20 seconds.
The nicotine amount is why E-cigarettes are good to use when trying to quit smoking. The E-cigarette gives you some nicotine, but not nearly as much.
Pick a Date
Setting up a time and date to quit can be a big step. Deciding when to quit shows you that you do have power over the addiction and can be an amazing kick start. This can also give you a goal to keep in mind, which can be a great motivating factor. The sooner you quit smoking, the sooner your health will return to you.
The day before or even just before the deadline to stop smoking is reached, allow yourself one last cigarette if you so feel the need, have be a final goodbye.
Go on with your day as you would normally, but change your thinking. Instead of being irate and pouty, change your thinking from ‘I wish I could smoke’ to ‘I am not going to smell of smoke’ or something along those lines to motivate yourself. These methods of positive thinking can make it easier to quit and can improve your overall mindset.
Do Not Alienate Yourself
If you have friends that smoke, you do not have to quit talking to them. If they offer you a smoke, tell them that you have stopped smoking and try to encourage them to do the same. Friends are important to have when trying to quit any addictive substance. Alienating yourself will only make it harder to quit.
Quitting smoking will also give you additional time to spend with your friends who do not smoke. You will not be interrupted by your constant need to smoke. This can make both time with family and friends more valuable and worthwhile.
Not Another One
Do not try having another smoke for ‘old time sake’ if you quit smoking. One cigarette is all it takes to get the addiction going in full swing all over again. Do not risk it. While this may sound hard, and it may be one of the most difficult parts of smoking, it is important. Just smoking one cigarette takes time off your life. Save yourself precious minutes for what matters most, not a cigarette.
If you still have some of a pack left after the set date to stop smoking, throw them away. Do not hold on them as they can be quite tempting. Throw them away and do not look back.
With all the health benefits of not smoking, you will have more energy, you will be breathing better, your scenes of taste and smell will back to normal. Enjoy that freedom! Go hiking, or swimming, or camping, go to the gym. Just celebrate by doing something active and fun with your friends or family.
Smoking causes 480,000 deaths a year while secondhand causes 33,950 deaths a year. Save yourself and your loved ones. Not smoking and not smoking around loved ones can lessen the chances of death for both of you.
- Stay Busy
Find a hobby that you have been wanting to get into for a while; spend the money you would spend on cigarettes on that hobby. If you keep yourself busy enough, your mind will not remember that you are fighting an addiction. After all, when you do not smoke, you will have more time and money for things that you love, rather than things you are addicted to.
If you are craving a smoke, breath deeply. Breath in through your mouth for four seconds, hold for seven, and exhale for eight. While doing this, imagine seeing the clean air entering and cleaning your lungs rather than the heavy, chemical tainted air burning its way down your throat. Meditation and visualization are both important tools for quitting smoking. Learning how to do these things can also be helpful in other stressful situations.
While this one seems like it would not do all that much, this will surprise you. People have found that drinking water can stop cravings. Perhaps it is the motion of raising your hand to put something in your mouth, maybe it is putting something healthy in your mouth rather than chemicals. Oral fixation is common among smokers, and even drinking water can help.
As an added bonus, drinking water is great for your health. Not only can drinking water simply prevent dehydration, it is also great for the general functioning of your body.
You may have heard of AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) for recovering alcoholics. Some communities even have a group like that for people who are trying not to smoke. These groups can provide emotional support for those who are trying to quit smoking. These groups can also provide you with friends who can help you along the way. Who knows? They may even prove to be lifelong friends.
If you do not have a group like this one in your area, try to make one of your own. Smokers often hang out with other smokers. Try to make a pact to quit smoking together. This way, you can help yourself quit, and help countless others to quit smoking as well.
Do not worry about not smoking for the rest of the week. Worry about smoking for that hour or not at all until you feel a craving coming on. When you feel like you might be ‘needing’ a smoke, think about what you can do to not lite the cigarette. We wish you all the luck in your attempt to quit smoking.