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Make resolution to quit tobacco with Hendrick cessation program

Make resolution to quit tobacco with Hendrick cessation program

The health rewards of quitting tobacco begin almost immediately and last a lifetime. Smoking tobacco products, for instance, damages almost every organ in the body, which is why the health benefits of quitting smoking are exponential. Smoking adversely affects the body in multiple ways, including increased blood pressure and heart rate, reduced blood flow and damaged blood vessels. Smokers also face higher risks for developing several diseases, such as lung cancer, emphysema, heart disease, stroke, oral cancer, diabetes, tuberculosis and immune system disease.

Cigars, dip or e-cigarettes are also considered tobacco products because of the nicotine. Cigar and pipe smokers have an increased risk for cancer of the mouth, esophagus, throat, voice box and lungs, and more than 25 cancer-causing chemicals are in smokeless tobacco products that are spit or chewed.

For smokers, the benefits of quitting can be seen almost immediately and snowball over time, said Linda Neill, manager for education services at Hendrick Cancer Center. They include:

  • After 20 minutes: blood pressure and heart rate drop.
  • After 12 hours: carbon monoxide levels drop to normal.
  • After two weeks: lung function and circulation start to improve.
  • After one – nine months: senses of smell and taste improve and coughing lessens.
  • After one year: risk of heart disease is lowered by 50%.
  • After five years: risks of tobacco-related cancers drop by 50%. Risks of heart disease and stroke become the same as a nonsmoker.
  • After 10 years: risk of death from lung cancer is reduced by 50%.

Hendrick Health offers free individualized tobacco cessation counseling that can provide support and strategies to make a tobacco-free life a reality. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 325-670-4488.