Quitting Smoking and Heart Health
According to Statistics Canada, smoking is the leading cause of premature death among Canadians. Did you know that life expectancy for a smoker is 9 to 10 years shorter than it is for a non-smoker?
Tobacco damages blood vessels, leads to the build-up of cholesterol deposits in blood vessels, and speeds up heartrate. Smokers are two or three times more likely to suffer from heart disease, including heart attack. The risk is even higher in smokers with high blood pressure or cholesterol.
It is a proven fact that quitting smoking is good for your heart. Here are a few reasons why:
- After one tobacco-free year, the risk of cardiovascular disease drops by 50%.
- After 10 to 15 tobacco-free years, the risk of cardiovascular disease becomes comparable to that of a person who has never smoked.
Did you know that smoking can interfere with certain drug treatments and that when you quit smoking, your treatment may need to be adjusted? Be sure to consult your pharmacist to check whether this applies to your situation. He or she will be able to find a solution if need be.
Butting out for good is not easy! You may need the help of nicotine substitutes (patches, gum, lozenges, inhalers) or a prescription medication. Your pharmacist can recommend the best choice according to your needs and state of health, and offer support along the way to make sure you don’t light up again.
Very few smokers are able to quit for good on their first try. Don’t get discouraged. As the saying goes: If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again! Ask your pharmacist for help, and remember—it’s never too late to quit smoking.
The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide complete information on the subject matter or to replace the advice of a health professional. This information does not constitute medical consultation, diagnosis or opinion and should not be interpreted as such. Please consult your health care provider if you have any questions about your health, medications or treatment.