No matter how long you’ve been smoking, quitting can improve your health both immediately and over the long term. Your body begins to recover after just 20 minutes when your heart rate and blood pressure drop. In 12 hours, the level of carbon monoxide in your blood drops to normal. Over the next smoke-free weeks and years your risks of smoking-related cancer and other diseases drop dramatically.

Infographic: How Your Body Recovers After You Quit Smoking

Infographic how your body recovers after you quit smoking.

Additional Benefits of Being Smoke-Free

In addition to the short- and long-term health benefits, there are many other benefits to quitting smoking. You may notice that food tastes better and that your sense of smell returns to normal. Your teeth and fingernails stop yellowing. Ordinary activities like climbing stairs will leave you less out of breath. Tobacco use can also have damaging effects on your skin (like premature wrinkling) and mouth (including gum disease and tooth loss). Quitting can help stop those effects.

Make a Plan to Quit

Quitting smoking is not easy, but it’s one of the most important actions you can take to improve your health. Every year the American Cancer Society hosts The Great American Smokeout — an event that encourages smokers to make a plan to quit and offers support and resources.

If you’re one of the 34 million Americans who smoke, increase your chances of successfully giving up smoking by making a plan and getting the support you need.

If you have questions, please reach out to your Hoover Pharmacy pharmacist.