The benefits of quitting smoking

Right within the first few days 

  • carbon monoxide and nicotine leave the body and 
  • your sense of smell and taste improve considerably.

After two weeks 

  • the function of your circulatory system and lungs improve and
  • your physical performance increases. 

In a few months

  • respiratory symptoms  such as coughing, sputum production and wheezing reduces and
  • the function of your lungs improve considerably.

Quitting smoking reduces perceived stress and improves the quality and duration of sleep. Within just six months, it often alleviates symptoms of anxiety and depression as effectively as medication specifically intended for these conditions.

Quitting smoking improves oral health. Your breath becomes fresher. For the periodontal conditions common among smokers, such as gingivitis and paradontitis, treatment results improve. 

The earlier you stop, the greater the health benefits. Quitting smoking will still improve your health and wellbeing no matter your age.

Quitting smoking prevents serious diseases

Long-term smoking can reduce life expectancy by up to ten years. Quitting smoking reduces the risk of many serious diseases that either require long-term care or lead to premature death. 

  • The risk of a heart attack decreases within 1–2 years.
  • The risk of coronary artery disease halves within 3-6 years. 
  • The risk of a stroke decreases to the same level as non-smokers within 5–15 years. 
  • The risk of cancer of the mouth, throat and larynx halves within 5–10 years.
  • The risk of lung cancer halves within 10–15 years.
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease can be completely prevented by quitting smoking before the age of 30–40. Even for those who have already developed this disease, quitting smoking significantly slows down its progress.

Quitting smoking is one of the most important actions you can take to prevent cancer.  In addition to lung cancer, smoking causes more than ten different types of cancer in different parts of the body. These include cancers of the mouth and pharynx, larynx, oesophagus, stomach, liver, pancreas, kidney, bladder, cervix, colon and rectum, as well as blood cancer (AML, acute myeloid leukemia).

Quitting smoking helps with the treatment of many diseases

Stopping smoking is important if you have chronic diseases such as diabetes, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, arterial hypertension, rheumatoid arthritis or cancer.

Nicotine and the other harmful substances in tobacco affect the concentration of many medicines in the body and thus reduce the effectiveness of treatments. Indeed, quitting smoking often makes it possible to reduce one’s medication. If you have been prescribed medication for a chronic illness, tell your doctor that you are quitting smoking. 

Quitting smoking improves the prognosis for cancer treatments.

What are the other benefits of quitting smoking? 

  • It strengthens the body’s immune system.
  • It prevents premature skin ageing.
  • It reduces the risk of memory disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease.
  • It improves fertility and helps prevent and treat erectile disorders.
  • It prevents miscarriages and disorders in the growth and development of the unborn child.
  • It accelerates recovery from surgical treatment and reduces the risk of infection. 
  • It alleviates the symptoms of asthma and other lung diseases.
  • It reduces the exposure of others to tobacco smoke.
  • It saves money. 
  • It is good for the environment.