Social Benefits of Quitting Smoking
Most of us know that stopping smoking is good for your health, and good for your wallet, but there are also a range of other benefits that come with quitting. Although social factors might not immediately spring to mind when we think about the advantages of stopping smoking, improvements to your personal life can make a big difference to your overall wellbeing.
Smoking cigarettes has been shown to negatively affect skin by depriving it of oxygen and nutrients, which can result in premature aging of the skin of between 10 to 20 years, a yellow grey complexion, and even cellulite. Once you quit, you can prevent potential further damage to your skin caused by smoking, and also potentially slow-down the ageing process.
Similarly, giving up smoking also helps to improve the health and appearance of your teeth. As a smoker, you are more likely to develop gum disease compared to non-smokers, meaning that quitting may increase your chances of holding on to your teeth. Quitting also prevents teeth from becoming more stained, and will result in fresher breath and a heightened sense of taste.
Health of Those Around You
There’s perhaps no greater reason to quit than protecting the health of your family.
Smoking puts those closest to you at risk of a range of potential illnesses, including cancer, heart disease, meningitis, bronchitis, and pneumonia. In fact, secondhand smoke increases the likelihood of a non-smoker contracting lung cancer by as much as 24%, and heart disease by 25%. The reality is that there is simply no “safe” level of exposure to secondhand smoke.
When you quit, you’re doing your bit to create a smoke-free environment for your friends and family. This will have a positive impact on the health of your loved-ones – especially children. What’s more, by taking the decision to quit, you’ll also be reducing the likelihood of your children taking up smoking themselves.
It’s also true that quitting smoking leads to improved fertility. On average, non-smokers find it easier to conceive than smokers, and are ultimately more likely to give birth to a healthy baby.
It’s common for smokers to report that nicotine helps to relieve stress and anxiety. This is due to the fact that nicotine withdrawal often produces symptoms like anxiety and irritability that are relieved by smoking. However, far from helping to relieve stress, smoking actually heightens anxiety and tension, and instead people’s stress levels decrease after they stop smoking.