World No Tobacco Day 2020: How your body heals when you quit smoking

Doctors believe that the body starts to heal and return to its original self immediately after quitting smoking.

Myupchar May 31, 2020 13:00:17 IST
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World No Tobacco Day 2020: How your body heals when you quit smoking

Every year, 31st May is observed as World No-Tobacco Day. According to the Global Adult Tobacco Survey, conducted in the year 2017, 28.6% of the people in India consume different forms of tobacco (both smoked and smokeless).

To encourage people to quit the habit of smoking, the government of India has been working on an initiative ‘Be Healthy Be Mobile’ since 2015, which is done in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Telecommunications Union. The initiative supports smokers throughout their journey of quitting smoking with the help of constant text messaging on mobile phones.

World No Tobacco Day 2020 How your body heals when you quit smoking

Representational image. Image by Myriam Zilles from Pixabay.

Doctors believe that the body starts to heal and return to its original self immediately after quitting smoking.

Benefits of quitting smoking: The healing timeline

WHO states that smoking cessation can show positive effects on the body immediately. Quitting smoking can bring both short-term and long-term benefits. The changes reported after quitting smoking are as follows:

  • Within 20 minutes of quitting smoking the heart rate and blood pressure return to normal limits.
  • After 12 hours of quitting, the levels of carbon monoxide, a poisonous gas, drop to normal in the blood.
  • After 2-12 weeks of quitting, the blood circulation and the lung function of the body start getting better. Within 12 weeks, the heart and the lungs start getting the right amount of oxygen which is required for them to function properly.
  • After 1-9 months of quitting smoking, there is less incidence of coughing and shortness of breath.
  • Once you quit smoking for an entire year, the risk of getting cardiovascular disease cuts to half of what it was while the person was smoking.
  • After five years of quitting smoking, the risk of stroke would minimise.
  • After 10 years of quitting smoking, the risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, oesophagus, lung, bladder, cervix, and pancreas reduces to half of what it was while the person was smoking.
  • After cessation of smoking for around 15 years, the risk of suffering from a coronary heart disease gets equivalent to that of a nonsmoker's.

Ways to quit smoking

A person who wishes to quit smoking must make up their mind and should be determined. Some people may require nicotine replacement therapy in order to quit smoking. In this therapy, the people are given nicotine patches, lozenges, gums and inhalers, which release a limited amount of nicotine into the body without the toxicity of tobacco.

Constant support from the family members and friends through phone, email or text may help the person stay motivated through the journey of smoking cessation.

Some studies reveal that additional therapies like yoga and acupuncture can help the person deal with the withdrawal symptoms as well.

For more information, read our article on How to quit smoking?

Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, India’s first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health.

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