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Making the decision to quit smoking

A few statistics on smoking


  • According to the World Health Organization, 4.9 million people die worldwide as a result of smoking each year.
  • In Quebec, 21 000 people die of tobacco-related diseases annually.
  • 85% of lung cancer cases are caused by smoking.
  • Tobacco use increases the risk of various types of cancers, including:
    • Bladder cancer
    • Cervical cancer
    • Esophageal cancer
    • Kidney cancer
    • Laryngeal cancer
    • Oral cancer
    • Cancer of the pharynx
    • Pancreatic cancer
    • Stomach cancer
  • Blood cancer (leukemia)The use of tobacco increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, such as:
    • Atherosclerosis
    • Coronary heart disease (angina or heart attack); stroke
    • Aortic aneurysms
  • 75% of cases of chronic bronchitis and emphysema are related to tobacco use.
  • Babies whose mothers smoke before and after birth are three to four times more likely to die from sudden infant death syndrome.

The benefits of quitting

Cigarette smoking is one of the hardest addictions to break. The good news is that quitting has a whole host of positive effects! Some benefits of quitting can be felt immediately, while others are experienced over time.

After only 20 minutes
Your blood pressure drops and returns to normal. Your heart rate slows down and returns to a normal level.
After 8 hours
The oxygen level in your blood returns to normal.
After 1 day
Carbon monoxide is eliminated from your body.
After 2 days
Nicotine is purged from your system. Your nerve endings begin to regenerate. Your sense of smell and taste improve.
After 3 days
Your bronchial tubes relax, making breathing easier. Your lung capacity increases. Your energy level improves.
After 2 weeks (up to 3 months)
Your blood circulation and lung functioning improve.
After 1 year
The risk of developing cardiovascular diseases is cut by half.
After 5 years
The risk of developing oral cancer, throat cancer and esophageal cancer is cut by half.
After 10 years
The risk of dying from lung cancer is equal to a non-smoker.
After 15 years
The risk of coronary heart disease is equal to a non-smoker.

Sources of motivation

By identifying what deeply motivates you to quit smoking, you can increase your chances of achieving your goal. Some of the reasons for quitting are related to health or physical appearance, while others have to do with family, financial or social considerations.

There are many great reasons to stop smoking. The important thing is to always keep in mind your own reasons for quitting. This will strengthen your resolve and support your efforts, making it easier for you to reach your goal.


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The Website deals with health-related topics. The information presented has been validated by experts and is accurate at the time of posting. In no way does it replace the opinion of a health care professional. Uniprix Inc. and its affiliated pharmacists accept no liability whatsoever in connection with the information provided on this Website.