Photo by Christi Nielsen

Stop Smoking! - Just Quit! - Wade Meredith has written a stellar blog post: What Happens to Your body if you stop smoking Right now? Totally fascinating. The timeline he lays out is just too important not to share. Do see the original post by Wade Meredith at HealthBolt.net. If for some reason that is not available, read the cached copy below.

In either case, be sure to see this alternate version. Also see this What Happens to Your Body When You Stop Smoking Chart.


Also see Thank You for Smoking!

The Easy Way to Stop Smoking: Join the Millions Who Have Become Nonsmokers Using the Easyway Method

What Happens to Your body if you stop smoking Right now?
By Wade Meredith
From HealthBolt.net


Photo by John Goetzinger

I think one of the main reasons itís so hard to quit smoking is because all the benefits of quitting and all the dangers of continuing seem very far away. Well, hereís a little timeline about some of the more immediate effects of quitting smoking and how that will affect your body RIGHT NOW.

  • In 20 minutes your blood pressure will drop back down to normal.
  • In 8 hours the carbon monoxide (a toxic gas) levels in your blood stream will drop by half, and oxygen levels will return to normal
  • In 48 hours your chance of having a heart attack will have decreased. All nicotine will have left your body. Your sense of taste and smell will return to a normal level.
  • In 72 hours your bronchial tubes will relax, and your energy levels will increase.
  • In 2 weeks your circulation will increase, and it will continue to improve for the next 10 weeks.
  • In three to nine months coughs, wheezing and breathing problems will dissipate as your lung capacity improves by 10%.
  • In 1 year your risk of having a heart attack will have dropped by half.
  • In 5 years your risk of having a stroke returns to that of a non-smoker.
  • In 10 years your risk of lung cancer will have returned to that of a non-smoker.
  • In 15 years your risk of heart attack will have returned to that of a non-smoker.

So, you have more immediate things to look forward to if you quit now besides just freaking out about not being able to smoke.

See alternate version


Interesting comments from reddit post

Found the comments in this section interesting and a nice complement to Wade's post.


Alternate Version

A smoker co-worker decided to write an alternate version (it wasn't me, that's for sure).

What Happens To Your Body If You Stop Smoking Right Now (ALTERNATE VERSION)

  • In 20 minutes your nicotine levels have dropped enough that you begin to want a smoke...
  • In 8 hours the craving is driving you nuts and smoking is the only thing you can think about...
  • In 48 hours all nicotine has left your body and you start to shake...
  • In 72 hours your tolerance for bullshit has dropped significantly and your co-workers have noticed a slight change in your personality...
  • In 2 weeks your friends, family and coworkers now call you "Mr. A**hole" or "Miss Bitch" and are begging you to start smoking again...
  • In three to nine months the trial will be over after you kill the last person who asks you "How goes the no smoking?"...
  • In 1 year your jail-house 'protection' costs you 1 pack of cigarettes a day (how ironic)...
  • In 5 years you are being sold in prison for 2 packs of cigarettes (again, how ironic), but your prison tattoos look fantastic...
  • In 10 years you've now developed a jail-house heroin habit...
  • In 15 years the justice system labels you as unredeemable and commutes your 25 year sentence to life. But on the bright side, you've kicked your heroin habit and to help with the withdrawal symptoms, you've started smoking again (how very ironic)...

More Interesting comments from reddit post

This guy's comments (also from reddit.com) share his experience with the infamous nicotine patch. I didn't know it could affect your dreams.

Nicotine is a crazy drug!

I've quit three times before, twice for three months, and now for over two years. At my worst, I smoked about ten packs a week and would insist on having a cigarette within minutes of waking up or finishing a meal.

I used the patch when I most recently quit. At first I didn't read all the cautions and made the mistake of putting on the patch before bed instead of when I woke up, so I got the highest dose while sleeping.

Nicotine intake during your sleep can cause some very memorable dreams. I've sampled various hallucinogens in high school and the nicotine dreams were much more vivid and exhilarating. I have a fascination with sailing that I never had before one of these crazy dreams. I also woke up in a cold sweat several times, that was pretty gross.

I planned to do the whole 2-month series of patches, but after 10 days I just forgot to put one on after my shower one morning and didn't realize it until I got to work.

That first eight hours of withdrawal was quite an experience. I'd liken it to sensory overload - colors seemed brighter and I was aware of all kinds of little sounds I never noticed before, every CRT whine, every fan on every workstation sounded unfamiliar and imposing. There was also the general irritability, but I had braced myself for that.

The first eight hours of withdrawal being the worst part, I decided to give up on the patch and go cold-turkey after that day.

To this day, nearly three years later, the slightest bit of second-hand smoke gets my blood rushing and my mouth salivating, the way that first cigarette after a long plane ride used to.

I should probably cut myself off here, this is already looking more like a blog entry than a reddit comment. I just thought I would add this to the discussion - If you're a nicotine-addicted smoker and you're into mind-expanding experiences, I highly recommend quitting smoking, it's really quite a rush.

Indeed.

Also see Thank You for Smoking!

The Easy Way to Stop Smoking: Join the Millions Who Have Become Nonsmokers Using the Easyway Method
Thank You for Smoking: A Novel
Thank You for Smoking [DVD]

Related Posts

Brent — 18 October 2006, 10:29

I love the picture of the woman with a mouthful of cigs. She's a really cool person. Has an interesting blog.

tony england — 10 January 2007, 11:55

i am on only day 3 of giving up the ciggs,
i smoked 40 a day for the pass 20 years at first i never read the box on when and how to put the patch on likewise i put it on at night.......oh the dreams mad bad and worse then on the 2nd night the same....but last night never bothered to put new one on.Sleep oh blissful sleep...
I am finding it easy at the moment and my wife is finding it hard,But we will win give it up before it gets you.

Brent — 14 January 2007, 12:35

Awesome, Tony! Side effects are a b@#$%. Having your wife working along with you seems like it could be good thing for you both. I really wish you well with that effort--definitely worth it. Keep your motivation always in mind, as well as the milestones.

And don't forget to laugh at yourself! Any addiction creates such a bizarre experiences.

MarC — 28 February 2007, 21:11

Last smoke - sometime September. Cold turkey. So far so good. Reason? None. Just decided not to buy any. Ignored the cravings by being preoccupied with something like work, hobbies, exercise and family making sure everything is fun to do! Bottom line, DECIDE and have FUN afterwards. P.S. - Iím somewhat a computer geek but I do more than 100kms trail biking whenever I can.

Boon — 14 April 2007, 17:54

Hey there my name is Boon and since my diagnosis of diabetes type 2, well after smoking a pack a week for almost ten years i stopped cold turkey for two months and crave no more! I just feel better all way around!

Brent — 15 April 2007, 10:10

Fantastic, Boon! That change will surely extend your life. And I hear a lot can be done with the diabetes by adjusting diet, etc. I wish you the best.

Brenda — 10 June 2007, 18:58

All I'm going to say is try the new drug Chantix! It's the best thing I have ever tried. It's quite expensive if your insurance doesn't cover it but oh it is soooooo worth it I promise you.

kreeder01 — 19 June 2007, 07:38

I've smoked for over 12 years, I went and got a tattoo 4 days ago and haven't smoked since I ran out of smokes that day. Was not planning on quitting whatsoever. Zero withdrawal symptoms so I'm gonna just quit... very strange...

Brent — 19 June 2007, 09:07

Nice. That should make things easier. There's no good reason to smoke and many excellent reasons to stop. Good luck! We'll be pulling for you.

David — 25 June 2007, 04:51

chantex oh yea no prob

lexa — 20 July 2007, 18:25

i smoke more about 7 years. And zyban well help me quit smoking. Read blog post about Zyban pills.
Zyban pill review

Selina — 31 October 2007, 06:34

I haven't had a cigarette since a week ago Monday. I have been taking Chantix for almost 3 weeks. I don't know if it is the drug or the fact that I am just so sick and tired of being dependant on the damn things!! Although I really don't physically want to smoke mentally I still do. But I am going to do this!!!! Good Luck to all of you!!

Vidal — 02 November 2007, 08:00

Maybe QuitSmoking Counter will help you!
Online quit smoking counter that measures smoking cessation and the length of time the person has stopped smoking, money you saved and extra live gained!
http://www.quitsmokingcounter.com/

Brent — 02 November 2007, 08:45

Thanks, Vidal! That's great suggestion for people.

ABS — 03 November 2007, 08:59

Day three Smoke Free! I have smoked for ten years, and decided to quit with my brother. HAd a really tough first day. Haad to attend an event where everyone was smoking. Wanted to kill my BF. Got Nocorette the next day. Much better. Still itching but done being dependant.

Brent — 03 November 2007, 17:17

Excellent! Keep it up. Remember your motivation.

OREGONDAVE — 18 November 2007, 23:52

Smoked a pack and a half for 28 years - saw my life pass before my eyes due to a caffene and nicotine induced artirial fibrilation episode. Heart rate irregular and beating 165 times per minute (possible stroke imminent) (cardiac failure imminent) and lasting for 5 hours before the emergency room got it back to normal. The real thought of no more family; no more wife; no more friends; everthing left unfinished; my family sent into financial ruin -- the list goes on and on. And have you thought how those closest to you find a way to go on? Your gone and don't even know it, their living hell is just about to begin it's own lifetime. Why it took 28 years to see this clearly , I don't know. What
I do know is that after all the hapless attempts to quit smoking were so utterly unsuccessful I can only assume this was the first time I stopped lying to myself that everything would be ok. Cold turkey and I won't lie, it sucked but was not as hard as I had feared. It was the first time my desire to quit was greater than my desire to smoke. 43 days and counting. DEATH CAN COME AND SNATCH YOU WITHOUT WARNING OR CONSENT. AND ALL THE PROMISES IN THE WORLD IN THAT MOMENT WILL DO YOU NO GOOD. I WAS WALKED TO DEATHS DOORSTEP AND FOR SOME REASON ALLOWED TO RETREAT. FINALLY AFTER THAT DAY - I STOPPED LYING TO MYSELF - I HAD TO. DO YOURSELF A FAVOR STOP LIVING THE LIE.LIFE IS TOO PRECIOUS, AND THERE ARE NO DO OVERS. I"LL REPEAT THAT - THERE ARE NO DOOVERS PERIOD - STOP TODAY. JUST STOP, I BEG YOU... ...

Tinker — 27 November 2007, 07:18

GET YOUR EARS ZAPPED! My husband and I got our ears zapped 4 days ago and it really does work. We both smoked over a pack a day and when we walked out of the clinic we became non-smokers. No cravings, no urges. It's the most amazing thing. Go to www.gilmoreclinic.com and read for yourself. I definately recomend this. It doesn't hurt at all, it's fast, and best of all IT WORKS!!

Sharon — 09 April 2008, 02:29

I smoked 30 cigs a day,for 35 years My legs started to hurt, Went to Dr.found out I have vascular disease.I quit that day, I would rather walk than smoke.

Brent — 09 April 2008, 06:35

Indeed! Great decision. Having that clear motivation will take you though any rough patches. Best wishes...

ybnvs — 19 April 2008, 18:28

It's been 4 months and 1 day since my last cigarette. I took chantix for about four months and was able to quit. I still have cravings but have been able to fight off the urge to smoke so far.

Oregondave — 27 May 2008, 23:41

Update from the Nov 18th, 2007 post above. Today is day 231. No cigarettes!!!! Period. Exclamation point!Done!! See you again at 365.

Brent — 28 May 2008, 06:49

Fantatastic!!! Great job, Oregondave! You should be well over the chemical addiction--the biggest hurdle. You should be very proud of yourself, as should your family and friends.