St. Joseph Health System
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Quit Smoking

Smoking is one of the most common preventable causes of premature death in the United States. It is one of the leading causes of cardiovascular disease, stroke, ulcers, various cancers, and emphysema.  Not smoking is also a vital factor in the prevention and treatment of coronary heart disease. Although quitting can be quite a challenge, there are many benefits you will enjoy after quitting, including:

  • Increased energy levels and stamina
  • Improved sense of taste and smell
  • Saving money
  • Decreased risk of diseases that smoking leads to

Tips On How To Quit
As you are quitting smoking, you will probably struggle with the urge to have a cigarette. This is normal! At first, symptoms such as feeling irritability, hunger, and headaches are not uncommon in those who quit smoking. However, soon these effects will fade and you will be on your way to a healthier lifestyle. Making a change such as quitting smoking may be difficult, but there are many steps you can take to help the process of quitting easier.

  • Pick a date to stop smoking, and stick to it.
  • Write down a list of reasons for quitting including health benefits, family reasons, or increased energy levels. Leave the list somewhere that you will notice it every day.
  • Time your cigarette cravings, they usually only last for about a minute.
  • Make a list of things to do when you get the urge to smoke. Include things you can do by yourself, such as going for a bike ride or building something, and things that you can do with friends or family.
  • Rewards yourself for your milestones. You deserve it!
  • Remember that as time passes, the urges to smoke a cigarette will subside, and you will find yourself living a healthier and happier life.

Secondhand Smoke
People who are exposed to the smoke of others are often at just as much risk to its negative effects. 38,000 people die each year as a result of being exposed to the smoke of others. Serum cotinine-a breakdown product in nicotine-has been found in 9 out of every 10 nonsmokers. Secondhand smoke has been linked to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, various cancers, and cardiovascular disease. Choosing to quit smoking will bring positive benefits to your life as well as the lives of the people around you.



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