Quitting smoking is one of the best things one could do for their long term health. This is true regardless of age, how long you have been smoking. According to the CDC some 34 million American adults and over 16 million people live with at least one disease caused by smoking. In addition, about 1,600 young people under age 18 years smoke their first cigarette each day, and 235 begin smoking daily.
Smoking is linked to an number of disease and disability and is associated with long-term harm to nearly every organ in the body. These include:
- Heart Disease
- Lung Disease
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Chronic Bronchitis
- Increased risk of tuberculosis, certain eye disease, rheumatoid arthritis and issues with your immune system
How to Quit
Quitting smoking can be a tough thing to do, especially because many people who smoke become addicted to nicotine a drug that is found naturally in tobacco. This addiction makes it hard and seemingly impossible for those who smoke to quite especially if they have been smoking for a prolonged period of time. However, a combination of counseling and medication have been proven to show results in helping you quite.
Counseling is primarily used to help you make a plan to quit and help you to cope with the negative side effects you may experience as a result of quitting smoking. This can include preparing you to cope with stress, your urges to smoke and other issues associated with fighting addiction to nicotine the main ingredient that makes quitting smoking difficult.
Medicating can help you manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings which will help you along your journey of quitting smoking. The main method of medicating to help quit smoking is through Nicotine Replacement Therapy which can take the form of over-the-counter medications such as patches, gum, lozenge and as well as prescription forms such as inhalers and nasal sprays. Medication combined with counseling has proven the most effective in helping people to quit smoking.
Quit Smoking Today for a Healthy Future
If you smoke and have been thinking about quitting or have tried to quit before and found it extremely difficult just know that you are not alone. In fact, the negative side effects of withdrawal is probably the biggest barrier that many face toward smoking cessation. However, the negative health effects of long-term smoking such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease far outweigh the short-term discomforts associated with quitting smoking. In the long-run you can expect much better health outcomes and reduced risks as a result of quitting smoking.
If you or a loved one are trying to quit smoking find more information on how you can get started on quitting by going online to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Office on Smoking and Health (OSH) website.