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Skip the Cigs

Smoking damages nearly every organ in your body and causes many diseases including cancer, stroke, emphysema, heart disease, gum disease, and diabetes. It is estimated that 1 in 2 smokers will die of a smoking-related disease, often prematurely.

In Pennsylvania, the average cost for a pack of cigarettes is $8.27. If you smoke one pack per day, that adds up to $57.89 per week, $248.10 per month, and $2,977.20 per year.

The good news? Quitting is not impossible, and we can help!

The Benefits

Just 20 minutes after you quit smoking, your blood pressure and pulse start to return to more normal levels. In addition, fibers in the bronchial tubes that previously didn’t move well due to constant exposure to smoke will start to move again. This is beneficial for the lungs: These fibers help move irritants and bacteria out of the lungs, helping reduce the risk for infection

8 hours later, your carbon monoxide levels will return to a more normal level. Carbon monoxide is a chemical in cigarette smoke that replaces oxygen particles in the blood, lowering the amount of oxygen your tissues receive. When carbon monoxide goes away, your oxygen levels start to increase to more normal levels. This increased oxygen helps nourish tissues and blood vessels that were getting less oxygen while you were smoking.

24 hours later, you’ve already decreased your risk of heart attack This is because of reduced constriction of veins and arteries as well as increased oxygen levels that go to the heart to boost its functioning.

After 2 days, previously damaged nerve endings start to regrow. You may also start to notice that senses that were previously dulled due to smoking improve, so you may realize you’re smelling and tasting things better than you were before!

Once you've hit the 3 day mark, you’ll often find yourself breathing more easily. This is because the bronchial tubes inside the lungs have started to relax and open up more. This makes air exchange between carbon dioxide and oxygen easier.

Smokers who successfully make it 1 week without smoking are nine times as likely to successfully quit.

Within 2 weeks of quitting smoking, you may start to notice you’re not only breathing easier, but also walking easier. This is thanks to improved circulation and oxygenation.

1 month later, you'll feel a sense of heightened overall energy. You may also notice that many smoking-related symptoms have decreased, such as sinus congestion and shortness of breath with exercise. In addition to these benefits, fibers in the lungs that help keep the lungs healthy are growing back. These fibers can help reduce excess mucus buildup and protect against bacterial infections.

After 6 months of quitting, many people often notice they’re better able to handle stressful events that come their way without feeling like they need to smoke. They may also notice they’re coughing up much less mucus and phlegm. This is because the airways are much less inflamed without the constant exposure to cigarette smoke and the chemicals in cigarettes.

In 3 years after quitting smoking, your risk of a heart attack has decreased to that of a nonsmoker!

5 years after you stop smoking, your risk of death from lung cancer has dropped by half compared to when you smoked.

At the 15-year mark, your risk for heart attack and stroke has decreased to equal that of a person who’s never smoked before.


Healthline Newsletter 2019

Medical News Today Newsletter 2019

Cara Burns

CHCBC Intern

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