Smoking. It's a good time to quit. Several weeks ago we suggested you plot your plan and get ready for the Great American Smokeout. You have to want it to be able to quit. How is your plan coming?
"Susan" quit smoking a while back when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. But she says now she didn't quit soon enough. This time the diagnosis is lung cancer. Friends and loved ones have watched her weaken by the week.
"Ada" started smoking as a teenager. The younger a girl is when she begins, the stronger the addiction and the more difficult it is to quit. Even though she had a miscarriage that may have been related to smoking, she says, "I'm smoking less. I'm going to quit."
"Betty" had a miscarriage and immediately quit 'cold turkey.' She later had a successful pregnancy. Did quitting smoking have something to do with it? When high stress events came into her life she began to smoke again, after nearly 10 years of being smoke-free.
Last week The Drug-Free.org and Join Together Partnership advised, "Smoking can reduce a woman's lifespan by at least 10 years." They also said, "Quitting smoking can add years back to a woman's life expectancy."
The study they refer to was conducted on a million women who represented three groups:
These women were age 50 to 65. They were tracked for 12 years. Women who continued to smoke three years into the study were three times more likely to die within the next decade.
"The researchers concluded that two-thirds of all deaths in female smokers in their 50s, 60s, and 70s are due to smoking." The more they smoke, the greater the risk of dying. Smoking just one to nine cigarettes a day can double your risk of smoking-related death."
They say that women who quit smoking before age 40 are 90 percent less likely to succumb to smoking-related death, under age 30, 97 percent.
But whether you are male or female, if you quit smoking before you reach middle age, you may add an average of about 10 years to your life. That's 10 years more to set and achieve goals, travel around the world, watch your family grow, experience life, love the love of your life.
The Great American Smokeout is slated for Nov. 15. You still have time to plan your cessation strategy.
"Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States, yet more than 45 million Americans still smoke," says the American Cancer Society.
There is that human thought, though, "It won't happen to me. It only happens to other people." And when it does happen to "me," then comes, "I should have listened. I should have done the right thing. I should have"
What will it take to convince you? Do you know
20 minutes after quitting your heart rate and blood pressure drops.
12 hours after quitting, the carbon monoxide levels in your blood reach normal.
Two weeks to three months after quitting your circulation improves and lung function increases.
One year after quitting, excess risk of coronary disease is halved.
After 15 years, risk of coronary heart disease is the same as a nonsmoker.
Family Recovery Center promotes the well being of individuals, families and communities with education, prevention and treatment programs for substance abuse and other mental health issues. For more information, contact us at 964 N. Market St., Lisbon; phone, 330-424-1468 or e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.