Updated: Aug 22
Welcome to this informative article about the dangers of smoking and the benefits of quitting.
As a former NHS smoking cessation group advisor, I have a wealth of knowledge and experience to share with you. In this article, I will cover the various health risks associated with smoking, as well as the immediate and long-term benefits of quitting. I will also provide information on the various solutions available to help smokers quit, including medication, counselling, and support groups. If you or someone you know is struggling with a smoking addiction, this article is a must-read. With the right knowledge and support, quitting smoking can be a achievable goal.
As a UK qualified clinical hypnotherapist, I have produced and recorded a downloadable Self-Hypnosis session for stopping smoking HERE It's not FREE, but it's cheaper than a regular pack of cigarettes.
The Dangers of smoking cigarettes.
Over several years, there has been much publicity about the dangers of smoking and most people are already aware of these however, in the UK today, there are still around 14 percent of the population still smoking. This article would not be complete without the following information.
Smoking is a dangerous habit that poses a significant threat to the health of smokers and those around them. The chemicals in cigarettes, including nicotine and tar, can damage the lungs, heart, and other parts of the body, leading to a variety of serious health problems.
One of the most significant dangers of smoking is lung cancer. Smokers are up to 15 times more likely to develop lung cancer than non-smokers. Additionally, smoking is a major risk factor for other types of cancer, including throat, bladder, and cervical cancer.
Smoking also increases the risk of heart disease, including heart attacks and stroke. The chemicals in cigarettes can damage the heart and blood vessels, making it harder for the heart to pump blood and increasing the risk of blood clots.
Smoking also affects the respiratory system, making it harder to breathe and increasing the risk of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a group of lung diseases that includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
In addition to the health risks, smoking can also have a negative impact on a person's social and financial well-being. Smokers may experience discrimination in the workplace and may have a harder time finding a job or housing. Smoking also increases the risk of fires, which can lead to serious injury or death.
Quitting smoking can be difficult, but the benefits are well worth the effort. Not only will you improve your health and reduce your risk of serious illness, but you'll also improve your quality of life and save money on cigarettes.
In conclusion, smoking is a dangerous habit with serious health risks that can lead to cancer, heart disease, lung disease, and other illnesses. However, quitting smoking can significantly reduce these risks and improve overall health, and there are many resources available to help smokers quit.
Is smoking roll ups better or worse than smoking regular cigarettes?
Smoking roll-ups, is not necessarily better or worse than smoking regular cigarettes. Both types of cigarettes contain tobacco and inhaling the smoke can have negative effects on your health, including an increased risk of lung cancer, emphysema, and heart disease. Additionally, hand-rolled cigarettes may contain additional harmful chemicals due to the addition of certain types of paper, filters, or other substances. It is best to avoid smoking altogether to protect your health.
Is pipe smoking as harmful as cigarettes?
These days, we rarely see people smoking pipes like this not so cool dude in the picture however, pipe smoking can also have negative effects on health and may be harmful. The smoke from a pipe contains the same toxic chemicals as cigarette smoke, including tar and carbon monoxide. Pipe smoking has been associated with an increased risk of oral, lung, and bladder cancer, as well as heart disease and lung infections. It's also associated with lip, tongue, and throat cancers.
Additionally, pipe smoking can also cause damage to teeth and gums, and it can cause bad breath. Pipe smokers also inhale more deeply than cigarette smokers, which can result in a higher concentration of smoke in the lungs. Like cigarette smoking, pipe smoking is best avoided to protect your health.
Is cigar smoking as harmful as cigarettes?
Cigar smoking can also have negative effects on health and may be harmful. Like cigarette smoke, cigar smoke contains many toxic chemicals, including tar and carbon monoxide. Inhaling cigar smoke can cause lung cancer, heart disease, and lung infections. It also increases the risk of oral and laryngeal cancer.
Cigar smoking can also cause damage to teeth and gums, bad breath and the risk of addiction to nicotine is also present.
Smoking cigars can be particularly dangerous for people with pre-existing health conditions, such as heart disease or lung disease, as the risk of complications from these conditions can be increased. Like cigarette and pipe smoking, cigar smoking is best avoided to protect your health.
Vaping as an alternative to smoking.
Vaping has become a popular alternative to smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes, and many people have found that it has helped them on their journey to giving up tobacco.
E-cigarettes, also known as vapes, are battery-powered devices that convert liquid nicotine into a vapor that is inhaled. Unlike traditional cigarettes, which burn tobacco and release thousands of harmful chemicals, e-cigarettes only release the vaporized liquid. This can make vaping a less harmful alternative to smoking.
One of the main appeals of vaping as a tool to quit smoking is the ability to control the amount of nicotine consumed. Nicotine is highly addictive and is one of the main reasons that people find it difficult to quit smoking. With vaping, users can start with a high nicotine concentration and gradually reduce it over time, which can make it easier to quit nicotine altogether.
Another advantage of vaping is that it can mimic the physical act of smoking. For many smokers, the act of smoking is as much a psychological habit as it is a physical one. Vaping can provide a similar experience without the harmful chemicals, making it a less harmful alternative to traditional cigarettes.
It's important to note that vaping is not without risks and should not be considered as completely safe. However, it's considered to be less harmful than traditional cigarettes, and it can be a useful tool for smokers who are trying to quit.
It's recommended to consult with a healthcare professional before starting vaping. They can provide guidance on how to use vaping as a tool to quit smoking and provide advice on the best products to use.
In conclusion, vaping can be an effective tool for those who are trying to quit smoking. It allows users to control the amount of nicotine consumed and can mimic the physical act of smoking, which can make it easier to quit. However, it's not without risks and should be used under the guidance of a healthcare professional. With the right approach, vaping can be a valuable tool on the journey to giving up tobacco.
The social stigma of smoking?
Smoking has a significant social stigma attached to it, as it is widely recognized as a harmful and dangerous habit. Many people view smokers as being less healthy and less attractive than non-smokers. The stigma of smoking can also extend to discrimination in the workplace, as some employers may view smokers as being less productive or more prone to taking sick days.
Smoking is also increasingly being banned in public places, which can make it difficult for smokers to find places to smoke, and can lead to feelings of isolation and exclusion.
In addition, anti-smoking campaigns and graphic warning labels on cigarette packages have contributed to the negative perception of smoking.
This stigma can make it difficult for smokers to quit, as they may feel ashamed or judged for their habit. Some smokers may also feel that they have to hide their smoking from others, which can be stressful and isolating.
It's worth noting that the stigmatization of smoking is a double edged sword, it has helped to decrease smoking rates, but it also can make it harder for smokers to quit, and can create barriers to accessing help and support.
The true cost of smoking cigarettes.
The average cost of a year's supply of cigarettes if a person smokes 10 a day in the UK can vary depending on the brand and location. However, as of 2021, in the UK, the average cost of a pack of 20 cigarettes is around £10.50.
If a person smokes 10 cigarettes a day, that equates to 3,650 cigarettes a year. At an average cost of £10.50 per pack of 20 cigarettes, the cost for a year's supply of cigarettes would be approximately £1,867.50.
It's important to note that this cost does not take into account any additional expenses such as lighters or ashtrays, or the cost of any smoking-related health issues. The cost of cigarettes has been increasing over the years, so it's likely that this number will be higher in the future.
How long does it the for the body to repair itself after quitting smoking?
So far, this article makes grim reading but from here on, everything you read is positive.
The length of time it takes for the body to repair itself after quitting smoking can vary depending on the individual and the length of time they have been smoking. However, there are some general milestones that can indicate the progress of the healing process.
Within 20 minutes of quitting smoking, the heart rate and blood pressure begin to return to normal. Within 12 hours, the level of carbon monoxide in the blood drops to normal. Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas that is present in cigarette smoke and can decrease the amount of oxygen that the body's cells and tissues receive.
Within 2 to 12 weeks, the circulation improves, and lung function increases. This means that the body is better able to transport oxygen to the cells and tissues, which can improve energy levels and reduce shortness of breath.
Within 3 to 9 months, the body's ability to fight off infections improves, and the risk of lung infections decreases. Additionally, coughing and wheezing may decrease, and lung capacity may improve.
After 1 year of quitting smoking, the risk of heart disease is cut in half. After 5 to 15 years, the risk of stroke is the same as that of a non-smoker. And after 10 years, the risk of lung cancer is about half that of a current smoker.
It's important to note that these milestones are general and can vary depending on the individual, the length of time they have been smoking, and their overall health. Quitting smoking is one of the best things you can do for your health, and the benefits start as soon as you stop smoking.
In summary, the body begins to repair itself almost immediately after quitting smoking, but the full healing process can take several years. The time it takes for the body to repair itself after quitting smoking can vary from person to person and the length of time they smoked, but the benefits of quitting smoking start as soon as you stop.
And now for the solutions:
NHS smoking cessation group classes
As I previously mentioned, I am a former NHS smoking cessation advisor.
These groups are a valuable resource for individuals who are trying to quit smoking. The classes provide a supportive environment where individuals can come together with others who are also trying to quit, share their experiences and learn from one another.
One of the main values of these classes is the support and encouragement that participants receive from the group. Quitting smoking is a difficult process, and it can be easy to feel alone and unsupported. In a group setting, individuals can share their struggles, successes, and provide each other with encouragement and motivation.
Another value of these classes is the education and information provided by the facilitators. Classes are led by trained professionals who have knowledge about smoking cessation and can provide participants with accurate information about the risks of smoking, the benefits of quitting, and the various methods and resources available to help them quit.
Additionally, group classes provide a structured approach to quitting smoking, which can help to increase the chances of success. Participants receive a set schedule of meetings, which provides a sense of accountability and commitment to the process.
Another benefit of group classes is the cost-effectiveness, as they are offered by the National Health Service (NHS) for free. This makes it accessible for everyone, regardless of their financial situation.
In conclusion, NHS smoking cessation group classes provide a valuable resource for individuals who are trying to quit smoking. The classes offer a supportive environment, education, and information, a structured approach, and are cost-effective. The support and encouragement provided by the group, along with the guidance of trained professionals, can increase the chances of success in quitting smoking. In some areas, the NHS also offer one-to-one smoking cessation advice; To find a facility in your area CLICK HERE
For most people, stopping smoking can be difficult but there are many more solutions available to help you.
Here are some tips and solutions that may help:
Use Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT): Nicotine gum, patches, lozenges, and inhalers can help reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings.
Medications: Some prescription medications, such as bupropion and varenicline, can help reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
Counselling: Talking to a counsellor or therapist can help you understand your addiction and develop strategies for coping with cravings and triggers.
Support groups: Joining a support group can provide you with a community of people who understand what you're going through and can offer encouragement and support.
Try alternative therapies: Acupuncture, hypnotherapy, and other alternative therapies may help with cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
Find healthy alternatives: Incorporate physical activity, healthy eating, and relaxation techniques into your daily routine.
Reward yourself: Give yourself a reward for each milestone you reach, such as a meal out (let's face it, you can now afford it.
More about Hypnotherapy to stop smoking.
Hypnotherapy can help individuals quit smoking by utilizing techniques such as visualization and suggestion to change the person's mindset and behaviour towards smoking. During a hypnotherapy session, the therapist will guide the person into a relaxed state of mind, known as hypnosis. Once in this state, the therapist may use techniques such as visualization to help the person imagine themselves as a non-smoker, or suggest that the person no longer has a desire to smoke.
The therapist may also work on addressing the underlying psychological reasons for why the person smokes. The goal of hypnotherapy is to help the person change their relationship with smoking and make it easier for them to quit.
Aversion therapy, where an unpleasant stimulus is paired with smoking, can also be used in conjunction with hypnotherapy.
It's important to note that hypnotherapy may work for some people but may not work for others. It's also important to mention that hypnotherapy should be performed by a trained professional.
Remember, quitting smoking is not easy, and it may take several attempts to quit for good. But with the right support and determination, you can overcome your addiction and enjoy the many benefits of a smoke-free life. You can begin to enjoy the true taste of food which is something you may have been missing. You will no longer carry the pungent smell of tobacco on your clothes which is repugnant to non-smokers. And you won't need to sneak outside of a restaurant in the cold for a crafty Fag.
If you're looking to quit smoking, it's important to find the right combination of solutions that works for you. Don't be discouraged if you slip up and smoke a cigarette after you quit. The most important thing is to keep trying until you quit for good.
Here is the link again to my downloadable Self-Hypnosis session to quit smoking.
IT'S NOT FREE, it costs just a bit less than a pack of cigarettes. HERE Pretty good value if you are 10 a day smoker, it will save you over £1800.00 a year.
"This article represents the personal views and opinions of the author and should not be taken as representative of the official policy or position of any organization, professional, expert, or individual."