Smoking is still a habit for 14% of US adults, despite the commonly-known fact that it causes significant and often fatal health issues. Smoking kills over 8 million people every year worldwide, but nicotine is addictive and can be difficult to give up.
Aside from the obvious health benefits of quitting smoking, there are also some surprising side effects. Let’s explore ten of those benefits:
What happens when you quit smoking? 10 Unexpected Benefits
- Your lung capacity increases. Lung capacity typically decreases naturally with age, but smoking speeds up the aging process, meaning you’ll get out of breath more quickly when exerting yourself. The difference between smoking and quitting could be the difference between you struggling to breathe after walking up a hill, and not feeling it at all.
- You’ll save money. Someone who smokes five cigarettes a day will spend approximately $1,300 over the span of a year. This money could otherwise go towards savings, vacations, or any number of more wholesome activities.
- You’ll have a heightened sense of taste and smell because the toxins in cigarettes won’t be dulling your senses.
- You’ll have whiter teeth, fresher breath, and lower chances of getting gum disease. Most non-smokers can smell the stale of old cigarettes when you pass by, and especially when you talk, so quitting will make people much happier when talking to you!
- Your lungs start repairing themselves immediately. Our lungs are incredibly forgiving, and they start to repair themselves as soon as we stub out that last cigarette. This effect has even been recorded in those who have smoked a pack a day for 40 years.
- You’ll have younger-looking skin. Smokers use muscles around their lips when drawing from a cigarette and continuous use of these muscles causes the “smoker’s pucker.” Squinting to keep smoke out of the eyes can also accelerate the development of crow’s feet around the eyes.
- You’ll have healthier bones. Smoking regularly can contribute to your risk of osteoporosis, which can cause damaging curvature of the spine over time.
- Your heart will be in better condition. Smoking affects almost every organ in the body, especially the lungs and heart. When a person smokes over a long period, the arteries that carry blood to the heart gradually narrow. Smoking also raises blood pressure and makes it easier for the blood to clot, both of which increase the person’s odds of having a heart attack (as well as a stroke).
- You may have an easier time having children. If you’re planning to become a parent at some point, quitting smoking should be your first port of call. Those who smoke have more difficulty getting pregnant, and those who smoke during pregnancy have a higher risk of miscarriage, premature birth, or an unhealthy infant.
- You are more likely to reach menopause at a reasonable age (if applicable to you). The average age of menopause for females who don’t smoke and had no exposure to second-hand smoke is 49.4 years. Those who have smoked reach menopause at around 48.3 years.
Quitting smoking has so many benefits.
Giving up tobacco allows you to lead a richer life in more ways than one. Quitting smoking can save you a huge amount of money every year, but more importantly, it can empower you to lead a long, healthy and happy life. Don’t live on borrowed time. Start your journey to a better life by talking to your doctor about how you can quit. Click here to book an appointment with one of our sympathetic and experienced practitioners today to learn about your treatment options to help you quit smoking today.