The Dangers Of Smoking

How do you make a healthier you? Making healthy choices like eating well and exercising are important, but there are many other factors that can affect your health. The use of drugs, including alcohol and tobacco, are important and can have a long lasting impact on your health. Millions of people in the U.S. still smoke today, despite knowledge of how harmful it can be. If you smoke, or someone you know smokes, it’s important to get informed so you can make a healthier choice.

While smoking has been declining, the rate of decline has steadily shrunk in the past five years. The highest number of smokers tends to be Americans with lower education levels, as well as those who live below the poverty level. The number of teens in the U.S. that smoke is 20%, which is on par with the national average. Monitoring teen smoking is important because many adult smokers began smoking before the age of 18.

The CDC reports that about 1 in 2 adults who continue to smoke cigarettes will die from smoking-related causes. Smoking can damage every part of your body, as this diagram on the CDC website illustrates.

So what can you do if you or a friend is a smoker and wants to quit? First, you can adjust your smoking habits to only smoke outside, away from non-smokers to help minimize their exposure to second hand smoke. Next, talk to your doctor about creating a smoking cessation plan together. There are many methods available to help you quit smoking, from patches to gum to support groups. You can choose a plan together that will work for you. If you can’t get to a medical professional right away, you can get help from the National Cancer Institute online at SmokeFree.gov. You can also call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to speak to a operator who can help you quit smoking!

If you were a smoker, what are your tips for quitting? Share what worked for you in the comments and help more Americans make the healthy choice to quit smoking.