Stopping smoking is one of the best things you will ever do for your health. The chemicals in cigarettes and other smoking products kill thousands of people in the UK every year. The toxins in cigarettes affect your body while you’re smoking and after the cigarette is finished. The chemicals in cigarettes damage the structure of your blood vessels, including the arteries that carry oxygen rich blood to your heart and brain.
By giving up smoking, you protect your body from the harm of dangerous chemicals such as:
This is a poisonous gas that you breathe in when you smoke. It means your blood cells can’t carry oxygen around your body as well as they should. Having high levels of carbon monoxide in your blood greatly increases your risk of heart and circulatory diseases.
This is also in cigarette smoke and can cause cancer. When you breathe it in, 70% of the tar stays in your lungs and damages them. Cigarettes labelled ‘light’, ‘mild’ or ‘low tar’ are misleading. All cigarettes are bad for your health.
This is the addictive chemical found in cigarettes. It increases your heart rate and blood pressure. Untreated high blood pressure permanently damages your arteries and your heart
When you stop, you give your lungs the chance to repair and you will be able to breathe easier. There are lots of other benefits too – and they start almost immediately.
The NHS offer free stop smoking services including free counselling and support to anyone who wants to quit smoking. You can go to group support sessions or, in some areas of the UK, you can have one-to-one support. You can receive daily emails for support, join the Quit Smoking support group on Facebook and download the NHS Quit Smoking app to help you quit smoking and start breathing easier today!
NHS website: Quit smoking - Better Health - NHS (www.nhs.uk)
Smokefree.nhs.uk: 0800 022 4 332