Not Worth It
Thanks to many recent movements to defeat the false stereotype that “smoking is cool,” people have become generally more aware that smoking cigarettes is very bad for you.
From nicotine’s deadly addictive quality to causing lung cancer and making it harder to find a romantic partner, below are just 10 of the many reasons to back up why smoking cigarettes is never worth it.
1. Smoking Kills
According to WebMD, “Smoking is the No. 1 cause of preventable death in the U.S. and worldwide.” While this is the most obvious reason to quit smoking, it sometimes is still not enough, due to addiction’s dangerous ability to warp reality and inhibit logical decision-making.
Unfortunately, because some of the fatal effects of smoking take many years to become visible (e.g. lung cancer), this first reason is sadly, rather easy for young smokers to ignore.
2. You’re Risking Lung Cancer and Other Respiratory Diseases
An astonishing 90% of patients suffering from lung cancer have their illness attributed to smoking cigarettes. Smoking is also responsible for other respiratory diseases like chronic bronchitis, emphysema, asthma, etc.
The general respiratory impairment associated with smoking can make it difficult to enjoy many activities. For example, smoking hurts your general ability to participate in the cardio necessary for your health.
3. You May Have Dangerous Circulation Issues
Smoking is responsible for severe damage to nerve cells and blood vessels, which can lead to countless fatal and life-altering circulatory and heart diseases (e.g. blood clots, Rheumatoid Arthritis, stroke, etc.). Furthermore, poor circulation impairs your body’s ability to heal wounds and other everyday functions.
4. Ingesting Deadly Carcinogens
Cigarettes contain hazardous chemicals—in addition to the already-harmful, addictive nicotine—that are too many to list (e.g.; ammonia, formaldehyde, lead, carbon monoxide, and 6,996 more).
5. Smoking Is Linked to Premature Aging
Smoking significantly shortens life expectancy. Quitting smoking can add years to your life, allowing you to spend more time with loved ones and pursue your goals and passions. Smoking cigarettes can result in premature wrinkles and grayish skin, resulting in an appearance that can look much older than a person’s actual age. But even more concerning is that “smokers die at least 10 years earlier than non-smokers.” (The Real Cost)
6. You’re Exposing Loved Ones to Secondhand Smoke
While you might be willing to sacrifice your own health and beauty when forced by the merciless hand of addiction, are you willing to sacrifice the safety of your loved ones? Secondhand smoke is dangerous to those around you, with scientifically-proven harmful effects. Secondhand smoke is harmful to those around you, especially children and non-smoking family members. Quitting smoking protects your loved ones from the dangers of passive smoke exposure.
“For example, research has found that non-smoking women who share their house with a smoking partner are 25% more likely to develop lung cancer than non-smoking women who live with a non-smoking partner.” (NHS)
7. Smoking Carries a Heavy Social Stigma
People are more educated than ever before on the dangers of cigarettes. This change in social tides likely also has to do with many younger generations witnessing that their parents and grandparents are now bearing the consequences of smoking as a teenager.
Quitting smoking can help you shed the stigma which has literally isolated you to designated public smoking areas and metaphorically isolated you from non-smokers. When you’re no longer planning your day around finding an acceptable place to smoke, your social life will greatly improve.
8. You’re Throwing Your Money Away
Traditional and electronic cigarettes are very expensive. If you weren’t smoking, you could be saving up for a new car, the down payment on your first home, or your dream vacation. By quitting, you can save a substantial amount of money that can be used for other priorities and activities.
If you’re searching for a motivational tool to help you quit, start a separate savings account for the money you’d otherwise be spending on tobacco. Seeing how fast that balance grows can inspire you to push forward.
9. You’ll Feel 100% Better
Nicotine, a main ingredient of tobacco, is extremely addictive. Even just a few occasional cigarettes can be enough to turn into a lifelong addiction, especially if you started as a teenager when your developing brain is more susceptible to nicotine’s vice-like grip.
Honestly ask yourself: How do you feel? Have you already checked in the mirror for premature wrinkles and stained teeth? Have loved ones who are being affected by your secondhand smoke—or who will be affected by your early death—crossed your mind? Does your emotional response to this list feel stronger than your craving to light up?
Quitting can lead to a noticeable improvement in these senses, enhancing your enjoyment of food and everyday experiences; lead to better cardiovascular fitness and overall physical well-being. Quitting brings relief, both physically and emotionally.
10. If You’re Committed, You Can Do It
You should quit smoking because you can do it. It is not easy, but it is certainly not impossible. Quitting smoking can be challenging, but the benefits are well worth the effort. Many resources and support systems are available to help individuals quit smoking, including counseling, medications, and support groups.
Education for Young Smokers
Young smokers, often referred to as youth or adolescent smokers, are individuals in their teenage years or early twenties who engage in the habit of smoking tobacco products. This is a matter of significant public health concern due to the health risks associated with smoking and the potential for lifelong addiction.
Efforts to reduce youth smoking involve a combination of education, regulation, enforcement of age restrictions, and support for those who want to quit smoking. It’s crucial to provide young people with accurate information about the risks of smoking and to create environments that discourage smoking initiation while promoting healthy choices and behaviors. Early intervention and prevention are key to addressing the issue of young smokers and reducing the long-term health consequences associated with smoking. Public health initiatives focus on preventing young people from starting to smoke. School-based programs, community campaigns, and counseling services aim to educate youth about the risks of smoking and promote healthy lifestyles.
Aviary Recovery: Addiction Treatment in Missouri
If you’re seeking treatment for drug or alcohol addiction at Missouri’s The Aviary Recovery Center, you may decide that now is the perfect time to quit smoking as well. Our trained staff will help you develop a plan that best supports your desire to lead a wellness-focused lifestyle. We’re here to help, every step of the way.