At Karmanos we understand that it is your choice to quit smoking. However, it is a fact that smoking increases your risk for almost every type of cancer, not just lung cancer. Smoking is also harmful to the people around you, especially children. Second-hand smoke, or passive smoking, is linked to many diseases and health problems, including cancer, lung diseases, asthma, ear infections and increased illness in non-smokers.
General benefits of quitting smoking
- An immediate improvement to your health
- A better sense of smell and taste, better physical stamina and fewer wrinkles
- You will also feel better about yourself, set a good example for children and save money
Benefits of quitting smoking for cancer patients
- Increases chances of surviving the disease
- Affords a better response to chemotherapy and radiation
- Reduces the side effects of treatment and allows for quicker healing after surgery
- Reduces the chance of a cancer recurrence or an additional cancer diagnosis
How Karmanos Can Help
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Ask your family and friends to support you. Ask your spouse or friends to give up candy or another habit in support of you.
- The urge for a cigarette will pass. Wait 20 minutes. Distract yourself with a healthy snack or a short walk.
- Most smokers try to quit several times before they are successful. Just because you have quit before doesn’t mean you won’t be successful this time
- Chew gum, eat sugar-free candy, chew on a straw or cinnamon stick when you have cravings
- Call a friend or support person when you experience the need to smoke
- Keep something in your hands like a stress ball, coffee stirrers, etc.
- Talk to other ex-smokers to see what helped them quit smoking
Did you know?
- 20 minutes after quitting: Your heart rate and blood pressure drop
- 12 hours after quitting: The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal
- 2 weeks to 3 months after quitting: Your circulation improves and your lung function increases
- 1 to 9 months after quitting: Coughing and shortness of breath decrease; cilia (tiny hair-like structures that move mucus out of the lungs) regain normal function in the lungs, increasing the ability to handle mucus, clean the lungs and reduce the risk of infection
- 1 year after quitting: The excess risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker’s
- 5 years after quitting: Your stroke risk is reduced to that of a nonsmoker 5 –15 years after quitting.
- 10 years after quitting: The lung cancer death rate is about half that of a continuing smoker’s. The risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, cervix and pancreas decrease.
- 15 years after quitting: The risk of coronary heart disease is that of a nonsmoker’s.
Many insurance companies provide coverage for quit tobacco programs & medications. Check with your individual provider. Medicaid recipients call 888-367-6557 to check your plan coverage.
For more information call 1-800-KARMANOS and ask for the Patient & Community Education Department or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.