Three Good Reasons to Quit Smoking

By Slava Fuzayloff

Are you a smoker who's thinking

about quitting but wondering if

it's worth it? Cigarettes are an

addictive substance, and

quitting can be difficult. But if

you need help, there are a

variety of medications and

methods designed to help

people stop smoking.

You may have heard the statement

that smoking causes lung cancer, but if that's not enough

to deter you, there are many other reasons-health and

non-health related alike- why smoking cessation is a

good idea; here are three good reasons to quit smoking

as soon as possible.

The most obvious reason to quit smoking is to protect

and improve your health. The Center for Disease Control

calculates that 443,000 people die in the United States

each year from smoking-related disease, and that more

people worldwide die from tobacco use than from HIV,

illicit drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle accidents,

suicides and murders combined.

The average person's

lifespan is shortened by eleven minutes per cigarette

smoked and smoking has been conclusively linked to a

variety of life-threatening illnesses affecting almost every

organ of the body.

Some of the most prevalent diseases among smokers are lung cancer,

coronary heart disease, stroke, and obstructive lung disease.

Other types of cancer linked to tobacco use are leukemia, bladder,

cervical, esophageal, kidney, laryngeal, pancreatic, pharyngeal,

stomach and oral cancer.

Smoking also causes low bone density (putting smokers at an increased

risk for broken bones and developing

osteoporosis), an increased risk of macular degeneration

and cataracts, infertility, high blood pressure and teeth

and gum disease. Smoking is not only a detriment to your own health;

it also harms the health of your friends and family.

Smoking is particularly dangerous for pregnant woman

and parents of small children, as exposure to cigarette

smoke can cause preterm delivery, low birth weight, still

birth, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).

Children around secondhand smoke also get sick more

often and are prone to developing asthma and fluid in

their ears.

But the risks are not only for children; people

who are exposed to secondhand smoke are more likely

to develop asthma and respiratory infections, and are at

a 20-30% increased risk of developing lung cancer or

heart disease when compared to other non-smokers.

Researchers are currently in the process of examining a

possible link between secondhand smoke and breast

cancer development as well.

The Center for Disease

Control states there is no safe level of secondhand

smoke; any exposure increases an individual's risk of

developing a life-threatening illness.

Quitting smoking can also improve your quality of life in

non-health related ways, including saving you money,

time, and the inconvenience of smoking in an

increasingly regulated society.

It is said that, the average smoker

spends about 1,500 dollars every year. In New York City,

the average is 3,300 dollars annually!

Quitting smoking

can save you not only that money, but also the potential

expenses of dealing with a smoking-related illness, and

save you money on your health and life insurance

policies; while the effects of smoking cannot be

completely reversed, your health will begin to improve

after you quit.

As your lung capacity improves, you'll be

able to participate in exercise and recreational activities

with greater ease, making your outings with family and

friends more fun.

Finally, quitting smoking means

you won't have to worry about smoking or nonsmoking

areas in or outside, and will give you a better pick at

apartment, hotel and even car rentals.