Do you want to quit smoking? If you’re trying to kick the habit, the second Wednesday in March is National No Smoking Day, a day aimed at helping you give up for good.
Smoking is the biggest cause of preventable illness and avoidable death in the UK, according to Cancer Research UK, with more than 100,000 people dying from smoking-related diseases each year. With quitting one of the best things you can do for your wellbeing, National No Smoking Day provides encouragement and support towards beating the habit once and for all.
We all know that tobacco is behind many health problems – but do you know just how many? Smoking can affect far more of your body than simply your lungs; for example, it can lessen your sense of taste and damage fertility levels. And, despite the common belief that it releases stress, studies show that quitting smoking actually reduces stress, depression and anxiety, while boosting wellbeing and happiness!
Other health complications of smoking include:
1. Stroke. The chance of you having a stroke increases by at least 50% if you smoke.
2. Cancer. The ‘big C’ is never a comfortable conversation to have, but smoking increases your chances of cancer of the kidneys, stomach, cervix and lungs, with smoking the cause of 84% of deaths from lung cancer.
3. Weaker bones. Smoking can make your bones weak and brittle, and increases the risk of osteoporosis for women.
4. Type 2 diabetes. Smoking increases your chances of developing type 2 diabetes, which can, in turn, lead to further health complications such as loss of vision as a result of a condition called diabetic retinopathy. It’s therefore important to regularly check your vision if you are diabetic.
5. Tooth decay. Teeth are damaged when you smoke, as well as your throat, mouth and gums. Take care of your teeth and have regular check-ups, as your dentist will be able to detect issues such as the early signs of oral cancers.
National No Smoking Day is the perfect time to quit cigarettes and take the first steps to a healthier future! These tips can help:
- Make a plan. Set yourself a day to stop smoking, make a list of all the reasons why you want to quit and put them somewhere you’ll see often throughout the day, such as your phone’s lock screen, your bedroom mirror or your car’s sun visor.
- A cigarette craving can last five minutes, according to the NHS, so plan some five-minute activities to do until the craving passes, to keep your hands busy.
- Surround yourself with non-smokers. Being around people smoking while you are trying to quit can prove too much of a temptation, so don’t put yourself through it.
- Get support! Reach out to your family and friends to encourage you to quit, or find support at yourlocal stop smoking service. According to the NHS, this can make you four times as likely to successfully stop!
Quitting is something you won’t regret, as it’s another firm step towards looking after the health of you and your family. A Plutus health plan can help keep all aspects of your health on track, especially when it comes to checking for those little signs of big problems, so call us on 01633 266152 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.