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The Risks Of Smoking

A man breaks a cigarette in half

Smoking is the single most important preventable cause of death and illness in the UK. It causes the premature death of 50% of smokers, and the deaths around 100,000 people in the UK every year. After the age of 35 years, a person loses 3 months of their life expectancy for every year of continued smoking.

Smoking related deaths

Cancers, heart attacks, strokes and lung disease are the most common causes of death. 25% of all cancers are due to smoking. Lung, tongue, throat, tonsil, oesophagus, bladder, kidney and stomach cancers are all more common in smokers. And don’t forget, that non-smokers who breathe in second hand smoker also have a higher risk of all the same illnesses as smokers.

Other risks of smoking

Smoking also raises the risk of osteoporosis (thin bones), erectile dysfunction and infertility. Heavy smokers are 6 times more likely than non-smokers to have a stroke. Whilst passive smoking alone is estimated to cause around 3,500 stroke deaths every year.

Never too late to quit

Whatever your age or length of time smoking, giving up will produce a measurable benefit. If you are lucky and you manage to stop before you are 35, your risk of developing any smoking related illness is very low. If you stop before you are 50, then your risk of dying from a smoking related disease is reduced by 50%.

There are quicker benefits too; it only takes 24 hours of not smoking for carbon monoxide to be removed from the body, and within three days all nicotine will be gone and breathing should become easier. In two months your circulation will be improving, and at one year your risk of having a heart attack is cut in half. After ten years of being an ex-smoker, your risk of cancer is half that of a smoker.

One year after stopping, a ten-a-day smoker will have saved £1,095.

So... what’s stopping you? Visit our stop smoking clinic for more information and prescription treatments to help you quit smoking for good.