2016 IS THE YEAR TO QUIT SMOKING
You know that smoking is bad for you – right? If you’re a smoker – make quitting your one and only New Year’s Resolution. We know it’s hard to quit and we also know it’s good for your health, good looks and even your social life! We’re here to give you more reasons to quit and more helpful tips to help you keep that resolution once and for all.
SMOKING AND YOUR SKIN
We all want to look as good as we can – right? If you’re a smoker, you may not know the many ways in which smoking impacts your skin.
THOSE WHO SMOKE CAN EXPECT:
- Loose skin under the eyes (bags)
- Uneven skin tone due to lack of oxygen and nutrients to the skin
- Sagging skin and deeper wrinkles due to smoking’s depletion of elastin and collagen
- Sagging breasts
- Lines around the lips from the lack of elastin in addition to the puckering done while smoking
- Age spots due to increased susceptibility to sun damage
- Damaged teeth and gums including being twice as likely to lose teeth compared to nonsmokers
- Stained fingers
- Accelerated hair loss
- More likely to develop cataracts
- More likely to develop psoriasis - a chronic condition that most often causes thick, scaly patches on the skin
- Crow’s feet eye wrinkles (sooner in life and deeper)
In addition, smoking carries with it an increased risk of heart disease, lung cancer,and throat cancer.
THE BENEFITS OF SMOKING CESSATION
The good news is that when you stop, many of the ill effects of smoking can go away or improve. Here’s what happens:
- 20 minutes later: blood pressure and heart rate return to normal.
- 24 hours later: your heart attack risk begins falling. In the first weeks after quitting, tiny cilia start back to work sweeping irritants out of the lungs.
- Two-twelve weeks later: ED improvements due to increased circulation.
- One year later: your risk of developing heart disease drops to half that of people who still smoke.
- 10 years later: you’re no more likely to die of lung cancer than someone who never smoked.
KICK BUTTS DAY IN MARCH
The Air Force just launched the Kick Butts Day registration and mini grants. If you’re interested in reading more, click here.
If you are interested in additional information you could visit the following sites:
TEN TIPS TO STOP SMOKING
- Find a reason. Do you want to look younger? Live longer? Get that boyfriend or girlfriend? Be a role model for your children? Smell better? Find a reason that means something to you.
- Get ready. Before you quit cold turkey, get all of your tools lined up. That means your moral support – smart phone apps – doctor’s advice – or taking a cessation class.
- Consider nicotine-replacement therapy. Gum or patches can curb the craving urge to smoke. Doctor prescribed medication also works for some people.
- Find new ways to relax or unwind. For the short term, try treating yourself to relaxations like a massage, or a pedicure, or bubble bath. Or a nap! Some unwind with exercise.
- Avoid triggers. Alcohol is a trigger for many people. For others, it is coffee. Before you quit, develop a plan for these triggers and replace them with something else.
- Replacement activity. Do something that is hard to do while smoking. Some people clean house. Others ride a bike. Some take a bath. Do the things that you never do when smoking.
- Eat fruits and veggies. When you feel the need to put something in your mouth – make certain it is something healthy. Have snackable fruits and veggies on hand for the hand-mouth connection and the crunch.
- Clean the smell away. Brush your teeth. Vacuum your car. Wash your smelly clothes. After you’ve not smoked for a while, your nose will start picking up the scent that smokers carry with them everywhere.
- Reward yourself. When you’ve passed specific milestones – reward yourself with something. It can be small or large – but pick a date and work toward it.
- Don’t give up. If you fall off the wagon and smoke, just quit again. If you’ve smoked two cigarettes, that doesn’t mean you need to finish the pack. Break it in half and start over again. One of the times that you quit will be the last time.