Smoking is a difficult habit to kick to the curb, and many people find it difficult to begin to process. One of the reasons people struggle to quit smoking is due to the dependency they have developed, especially when withdrawal symptoms can be a struggle to overcome. However, while the negative effects of smoking are widely advertised, something which is not made as clear, is the positive lasting impact stopping smoking will have on your lifestyle. If you are struggling to find a reason to stop smoking, then sometimes focusing on the positives can have a greater impact than focusing on the negatives. With that in mind, here are just a few examples of how going smoke-free will help you to improve your general quality of life.
Being able to to be more social
While fellow smokers might not mind the smell of cigarettes, many non-smokers can find smoking in general rather off-putting due to the smell and the problems involved with passive smoking. If you have a dependency on smoking, taking regular cigarette breaks means you can be removed from the conversation. If you live in a state where smoking has been banned in some, or all, public places and buildings, then it can be a nuisance if you are craving a cigarette and have to leave the group to go out in bad weather, or stand with complete strangers, just to get your fix. Therefore, stopping smoking can improve your social life and allow you to spend more time with people who do not enjoy smoking.
If you are looking for smoking alternatives while you wean yourself off smoking, vaping is a slightly more social method of nicotine inhalation and is less effective for other people in terms of the smell. You can read more about vaping if this is an alternative you would be interested in pursuing.
You will have more energy in the long run
While you may think that smoking energizes you and improves your mood, the opposite is true. Nicotine produces a short-lived, synthetic chemical reaction which improves your mood for a brief amount of time. However, in the long run, your natural ability to feel stress relief and happier is decreased while you continue to smoke. Not only that, but smoking lowers circulation, impairs your immune system, and damages your lungs making it difficult to breathe during physical activity, and resulting in the infamous ‘smokers cough.’ Quitting smoking can improve all of these symptoms; just 20 minutes after you stop smoking, your blood pressure will begin to drop and, after only one month of being smoke-free, lung function will begin to improve. This will give you more energy and give you the capacity to be more active.
Better family relationships
By smoking around your loved ones, you are subjecting them to second-hand smoke, which can still have a detrimental effect on their health, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke. As many people know this, they will often spend many hours away from their family smoking, and this can damage family relationships over time. Your family may also be concerned about the negative effects smoking has on your own health, and this will subject them to stress and cause strain in even the closest of relationships. If you are struggling to find the motivation to quit smoking for yourself, then your family may just be the inspiration that you need.
Stopping smoking can be extremely difficult, as it is a serious addiction. However, once you stop, or even begin to cut down, you will find that your quality of life begins to improve, and over time you won’t even miss how you felt when you were a smoker.
Author: Maggie Hammond is a retired nurse and freelance writer, exploring and writing in the U.S. in retirement. An advocate for public health and nursing qualifications, she feels passionate about raising awareness of the current strain on public health organisations. Contact Maggie at firstname.lastname@example.org