What are the main benefits of quitting smoking?

What are the main benefits of quitting smoking?

The physical benefits of quitting smoking can be categorized according to the time it takes to occur and the parts of the body involved. Although it can be challenging for heavy smokers to quit, the results are clear: quitting smoking for good positively affects the entire body. Here's an overview of the health benefits of a smoke-free lifestyle.

Quitting smoking: short-term benefits for the body

The benefits that are the quickest to appear after quitting smoking can also be the most motivating since they are felt after only a few dozen minutes! After only 30 minutes of withdrawal:

  • blood pressure decreases;
  • heart rate returns to normal;
  • the temperature of the body's extremities increases until it reaches its original temperature.

After a few hours without smoking, the levels of nicotine and carbon monoxide in the blood decrease drastically. The cells then regain their natural level of oxygenation.

A smoker who has quit smoking for 24 to 72 hours may see even more positive effects, such as

  • Improved taste and smell;
  • breathing becomes more ample and comfortable;
  • energy to spare.

The latter benefits can be explained by the expulsion of nicotine by the body, the rejection of smoke residue by the lungs, and the regeneration of nerve endings.

Positive effects on muscles and joints

Smoking can weaken bones and slow muscle recovery. However, quitting smoking can reduce the risk of developing bone and vascular disease while reducing the risk of muscle tears and inflammation.

However, joint or muscle pain, such as knee pain, may be experienced for a few days after quitting smoking. This is because the body eliminates toxins and cleanses itself naturally, which can cause this type of pain for only a few days.

Quit smoking to reduce the risk of serious diseases

Some of the benefits of quitting smoking take a little longer to manifest themselves. However, they have a very positive impact on an individual's general health!

After one year without smoking, the risk of stroke is equivalent to that of a non-smoker, and the risk of suffering a myocardial infarction is halved. Five years later, lung recovery halves the risk of lung cancer.

From 10 to 20 years after quitting smoking, the risk of developing other cancers (mouth, bladder, throat, etc.) decreases considerably, and life expectancy approaches that of people who have never smoked.

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