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Just like the negative effects of smoking can be sensed by your body right away, quitting smoking will have positive effects on your body just hours after you’ve quit, as your body begins a regenerative process that will continue for years and will work towards the improvement of your general health. When you consider quitting smoking, the details of how your bodily functions will improve, or when, are not necessarily concrete notions, but rather potential benefits that might occur at some point in the future. With the help of a quit smoking timeline, you might find out that the regenerative process of your body can be just hours away from beginning.
In the first two hours after you stop smoking your heart rate and blood pressure go down to healthier levels and your peripheral circulation improves, which you will perceive as a warming up of your hands and feet.
One of the most toxic substances in cigarette smoke, carbon monoxide has very high blood levels in smokers, but only 8 hours after you’ve stopped smoking, the carbon monoxide levels begin to normalize, and as the carbon monoxide begins decreasing, oxygen levels begin rising towards the optimal.
The next step on the quit smoking timeline is found at 24 hours, and it signals a decrease in your risk of having a heart attack.
48 hours after you’ve stopped smoking, meaning around the time you are hitting some of the worst moments in your withdrawal, is when nervous regeneration begins, which means that your sense of taste and smell will gradually be improving from now on.
2 or 3 weeks along the quitting smoking timeline, your circulation is showing great signs of improvement, you are having an easier time performing physical exercises and walking long distances is no longer a bother. Your lung function has also improved quite a bit, phlegm production has normalized and coughing is much reduced.
The next 1 to 9 months of the quit smoking timeline are dedicated in part to lung regeneration. The small cilia cells in the structure of your lungs begin developing and functioning again, your breathing improves; the health of your sinuses gets restored. You will also be experiencing less and less tiredness.
In one year, your risk of suffering a heart attack or other cardiac disease is reduced in half compared to when you were still smoking.
Following the quit smoking timeline, we find that in 5 to 15 years you are at as much risk of suffering a stroke as a non-smoker, that at 10 years you run radically smaller risks of contacting lung cancer and that even other forms of cancer that smokers are vulnerable to, such as cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, pancreas, kidneys and bladder are smaller. 15 years along the quitting smoking timeline your risk of developing a heart condition (either heart attack or coronary disease) drops almost to the levels of a person who has never smoked.
With the help of the quit smoking timeline, it’s easier to visualize your objectives and therefore easier to make the decision to stop smoking and stick to it. To maximize your chances of quitting smoking successfully, we recommend this list of quit smoking aids to you.
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