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While most people know that smoking increases the probability of developing lung cancer, the risks extend far beyond that. Cigarette smoking is harmful to every organ in the body. From bladder cancer to strokes, smoking is linked to one in five deaths in the United States. That adds up to more than 480,000 deaths each year.
In recognition of National Kick Butts Day on March 20, we shine the spotlight on smoking risks and how to kick the habit.
Health Conditions Linked to Smoking Cigarettes
What are the health risks associated with cigarette smoking? Here’s what experts at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say:
It’s easy to see why physicians say giving up smoking is one of the best steps you can take to improve your overall health and well-being.
If you’ve tried quitting before or if you think you are too old to quit, know that it’s worth trying again. You are never too old to reap the health rewards that come with quitting. We have a few ideas to help you kick the habit once and for all.
5 Ways to Stop Smoking
First, go into this with realistic expectations. Few smokers are able to go cold turkey and never smoke again. The longer you’ve been smoking, the more likely it is that this will be a longer process. Experts from the Mayo Clinic say the average smoker takes 8 to 12 weeks to completely quit smoking.
There are a variety of smoking cessation programs and products you can try if you are committed to quitting. Some are over-the-counter products and others require a prescription.
If you’d like to learn more about the health benefits of kicking the habit, read “Why You Are Never Too Old to Benefit from a Smoking Cessation Program.”