Your body responds to being smoke-free after only 20 minutes. Look out for these changes to encourage you to quit:
After 20 minutes: Blood pressure and heart rate begin to drop.
After 8 hours: Carbon monoxide level in blood decreases. You can cope better with physical exertion and may manage with less medication.
After 24 hours: Carbon monoxide is eliminated from the body. The heart’s supply of oxygen increases substantially, reducing the chances of chest pain following exertion.
After 14 days: Blood circulates more efficiently.
After 1 month: Skin appearance improves.
After 3 months: Lung function begins to improve.
After 1 year: The risk of having a heart attack reduces by up to 50 percent. If you’ve had a heart attack, quitting smoking reduces your risk of a subsequent fatal heart attack by 25 percent.
However determined you are to quit, there may be times when you struggle. To stay on track, try to:
- Keep busy
- Drink plenty of fluids
- Buy yourself a special treat with the money you’re saving
- Avoid other smokers
- Find a quitting partner
- Avoid triggers