I am doing something different today. Our Healthy Living Team at Ebsco publishes a quarterly healthy living newsletter. They asked for guest writers for the next issue. Since I recently became a non-smoker I feel very strongly about the issue and wrote a short article. I want to share it with as many possible smokers as I ca. I hope it is seen as encouragement and support for their stop smoking effort. Every smoker has one. They are sometimes on hold or lower priority but they always have one going. Man lasted over 30 years. Here is the article
A Gift that Keeps on Giving STOPPING TOBACCO
By Todd Pfeifer
I am proud to say I am a non-smoker effective 1/1/2012. I smoked since 1978, you figure out how many years that is, I ran out of fingers and toes. Now I am also proud to say I have not turned into one of the Official Reformed Smoke Nazis. You know the ones that flail their hands and cough when they get around smoke or make sure they exclaim loudly “What is that smell” when someone comes around that just finished a cig.
What I have become is someone who will continue encouraging smokers to join me, while understanding the timing is a personal matter. I also know that the phrase “try, try and try again” must have come from a smoker attempting to become a non-smoker. It often takes several attempts.
Here at Ebsco about 20% of our team smokes. That’s high. I hope that over time, we can bring that number way down. The key is finding the right incentive or motivation to stop at the right time. I would like to share a list of reasons to stop that I compiled from several internet sites. If one reason helps one person to take another shot at it, then the list is worth it. All I ask is that you take the time to read it.
- Smoking related diseases claim an estimated 443,000 American lives each year, including those affected indirectly.
- Smoking cost the U.S. over $193 billion in 2004, including $97 billion in lost productivity and $96 billion in direct health care expenditures, or an average of $4,260 per adult smoker.
- Smokers die significantly earlier that nonsmokers: 13.2 years for men and 14.5 years for women.
- Using nicotine replacement (E Cigs) can reduce withdrawals and DOUBLE your odds of quitting.
- Your appeal to the opposite sex could triple as a non-smoker. SERIOUSLY
- For every day that you are quit, your immune system improves (WOW I should have thought about that earlier)
- Quitting smoking can be one of the biggest factors in improving sexual functioning.
- Even smokers view non-smokers more positively than they do smokers
- Non-smokers as seen as more mature than smokers (In some cases)
- Excess risk of heart disease caused by smoking could be cut in half after just one year of quitting. Quitting smoking could eliminate your need for cholesterol-lowering medication.
- Lung function improves in a few months of quitting.
- There are at least 4,800 chemicals in tobacco smoke, 69 of which have been proven to cause cancer.
- 1 in 2 smokers will die from their habit and for every one that dies of lung cancer, 5 will die from other diseases.
- Smokers have more back pain than non-smokers and heal slower.
- Second hand smoke causes the following in children, ear infections, bronchitis, pneumonia and SIDS.
- A 42-year-old male smoking 20 or more cigarettes a day has about a 1 in 5 chance of dying within 17 years. If they quit, that risk is reduced to 1 in 10.
- Dental and gum disorders occur more commonly in smokers
So what’s the bottom line? YOU SHOULD STOP SMOKING! Every smoker knows this. I knew it for how many years? I don’t want to add them up. I hate think of the damage I did. I also know I wasn’t going to quit until I was ready. This is a decision only you can make. Just know it is doable. I smoked for…. Okay how many years? 34 years, WOW that’s embarrassing. But the important thing is I did quit, and if I can do it smoking 2 packs a day for 34 years, you can too. No magic cures or secret ways, again you have to do what is right for you. I really like the E Cigs and then getting of them but that’s me.
I’m not going to list all the things that start getting better every day when you stop, you know what they are. It really is the gift that keeps on giving. It might actually give you a few more year of life.[i]