Quit Smoking Timeline

Cigarette smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death today, but quitting can be daunting. Many fear it will take a long time to see improvements in health and well-being, but the timeline for seeing real benefits is faster than most people realise. Here is a quit smoking timeline. If you are interested in stopping smoking I offer sessions in person in London and online quit smoking sessions too.

Quit Smoking Timeline

Quit smoking timeline facts

Health benefits begin in as little as an hour after the last cigarette and continue to improve. Here are some key points about smoking cessation. Quitting smoking means breaking the cycle of addiction and essentially rewiring the brain to stop craving nicotine. To be successful, smokers who want to quit need to have a plan in place to beat cravings and triggers. The benefits of quitting smoking begin in as little as one hour after the last cigarette. In terms of a timeline, the sooner a smoker quits, the faster they will reduce their risk of cancer, heart and lung disease, and other conditions related to smoking.

Your quit smoking timeline

The benefits are almost instant. As soon as a person stops smoking their body begins to recover in the following ways:

After one hour

In as little as 20 minutes after the last cigarette is smoked, the heart rate drops and returns to normal. Blood pressure begins to drop, and circulation may start to improve.

After 12 hours

Cigarettes contain a lot of known toxins including carbon monoxide, a gas present in cigarette smoke. This gas can be harmful or fatal in high doses and prevents oxygen from entering the lungs and blood. When inhaled in large doses in a short time, suffocation can occur from lack of oxygen. After just 12 hours without a cigarette, the body cleanses itself of the excess carbon monoxide from the cigarettes. The carbon monoxide level returns to normal, increasing the body’s oxygen levels.

After one day

Just one day after quitting smoking, the risk of heart attack begins to decrease. Smoking raises the risk of developing coronary heart disease by lowering good cholesterol, which makes heart-healthy exercise harder to do. Smoking also raises blood pressure and increases blood clots, increasing the risk of stroke.

In as little as one day after quitting smoking, a person’s blood pressure begins to drop, decreasing the risk of heart disease from smoking-induced high blood pressure. In this short time, a person’s oxygen levels will have risen, making physical activity and exercise easier to do, promoting heart-healthy habits.

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After two days

Smoking damages the nerve endings responsible for the senses of smell and taste. In as little as two days after quitting, a person may notice a heightened sense of smell and more vivid tastes as these nerves heal.

After three days

Three days after quitting smoking, the nicotine levels in a person’s body are depleted. While it is healthier to have no nicotine in the body, this initial depletion can cause nicotine withdrawal. Around three days after quitting, most people will experience moodiness and irritability, severe headaches, and cravings as the body readjusts.

After one month

In as little as one month, a person’s lung function begins to improve. As the lungs heal and lung capacity improves, former smokers may notice less coughing and shortness of breath. Athletic endurance increases and former smokers may notice a renewed ability for cardiovascular activities, such as running and jumping.

After one to three months

For the next several months after quitting, circulation continues to improve.

After nine months

Nine months after quitting, the lungs have significantly healed themselves. The delicate, hair-like structures inside the lungs known as cilia have recovered from the toll cigarette smoke took on them. These structures help push mucus out of the lungs and help fight infections. Around this time, many former smokers notice a decrease in the frequency of lung infections because the healed cilia can do their job more easily.

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After one year

One year after quitting smoking, a person’s risk for coronary heart disease decreases by half. This risk will continue to drop past the one year timeline mark.

After five years

Cigarettes contain many known toxins that cause the arteries and blood vessels to narrow. These same toxins also increase the likelihood of developing blood clots. In a quit smoking timeline, after five years without smoking, the body has healed itself enough for the arteries and blood vessels to begin to widen again. This widening means the blood is less likely to clot, lowering the risk of stroke. The risk of stroke will continue to reduce over the next 10 years as the body heals more and more.

After 10 years

After 10 years, a person’s chances of developing lung cancer and dying from it are roughly cut in half compared with someone who continues to smoke. The likelihood of developing mouth, throat, or pancreatic cancer has significantly reduced.

After 15 years

On the timeline, after 15 years of having quit smoking, the likelihood of developing coronary heart disease is the equivalent of a non-smoker. Similarly, the risk of developing pancreatic cancer has reduced to the same level as a non-smoker.

After 20 years

After 20 years, the risk of death from smoking-related causes, including both lung disease and cancer, drops to the level of a person who has never smoked in their life. Also, the risk of developing pancreatic cancer has reduced to that of someone who has never smoked.

Quit smoking timeline: the benefits

Smoking is a harmful habit that can lead to severe health complications and death. When a person quits smoking, the body will start to naturally heal and regain the vitality of a non-smoker over time.  Some effects, such as lowered blood pressure, are seen almost immediately. Other effects, such as risks of developing lung cancer, heart disease, and lung disease, their timeline take years to drop down to the levels of a non-smoker.

However, each year of not smoking decreases risks and improves overall health, making quitting smoking an excellent choice for anyone who started the habit.

If it’s time to quit smoking get in touch today to discover how hypnotherapy can help you.