Prevention & Early Detection

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Reasons to Quit

There are many reasons to quit smoking. Begin experiencing the benefits today!

Reason #1: Improve Your Health

Your body will experience the following healthful benefits after quitting. In just...

  • 20 Minutes: Your blood pressure and pulse return to normal.
  • 8 Hours: Nicotine, carbon monoxide, and oxygen levels in your blood begin to return to normal.
  • 2 Days: Your lungs start to clear, and your sense of taste and smell begin to return.
  • 3 Days: Breathing is easier, and your energy level increases.
  • 2 to 12 Weeks: Your circulation improves, and exercise gets easier.
  • 3 to 9 Months: Breathing problems, coughing, shortness of breath, and wheezing improve.
  • 5 Years: Your risk of having a heart attack falls to about half that of a smoker.
  • 10 Years: Your risk for lung cancer falls to about half that of a smoker. You have the same risk of a heart attack as someone who has never smoked.

Reason #2: Save Thousands of Dollars

Smoking is very expensive. Smoking one pack of cigarettes a day for the next 20 years could cost over $54,000! Write down how much you spend on cigarettes every day for a week. Then work out how much your smoking costs you every year. Think of what else you could do with the money you save.

Reason #3: Improve the Health of Those Around You

If you smoke, you may be exposing those around you to your smoke and endangering their health. If people are exposed to tobacco smoke, they have a higher risk of breathing difficulties, and they risk getting lung cancer.

Reason #4: Improve Treatment Effects

Many studies have shown the benefits of stopping smoking on treatments for many diseases, including cancer, like increased treatment effectiveness, reduced toxicity of cancer treatments, and improved quality of life and survival. Tobacco use can complicate a wide variety of cancer treatments, including radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and surgery (Gritz, Dresler & Sarna, 2005).

Surgical patients may experience these benefits of quitting smoking:

  • Faster recovery after surgery
  • Faster healing after surgery
  • Fewer pulmonary, circulatory, and infectious complications
  • Reduced risk of being admitted to the intensive care unit after surgery

Radiation therapy or chemotherapy patients may experience these benefits of quitting smoking:

  • Better response to treatment with fewer side effects
  • Reduced risk for developing more tumors
  • Reduced risk of long-term toxicity or damage to the lungs
  • Improved immune function

Quit Smoking, Reduce Your Cancer Risk

Studies show that stopping smoking reduces people’s risk of cancer returning or developing additional tumors.

Tobacco is the cause of 90 percent of lung cancers, and smoking increases the risk of more than a dozen other cancers, including cancers of the mouth, larynx (voice box), pharynx (upper throat), nose and sinuses, esophagus (food pipe), liver, pancreas, stomach, kidney, bladder, cervix, bowel, one type of ovarian cancer, and some types of leukemia. There is also some evidence that smoking could increase the risk of breast cancer.

The goal of SCCA Living Tobacco-Free Services is to help you create a plan to quit that will work for you.