We all know the risks involved in picking up smoking, but somehow many of us fall into being addicted anyway. It starts with trying a friend’s cigarette. Then you think, “Hey that was not terrible. I didn’t get lung cancer or even cough, it’s pretty good.” So you sniff around for a while, likely get into a smoking group, then one night you go buy yourself a pack of cigarettes and you realize you’re addicted.
A similar thing happens with people who vape, only vaping is much more user-friendly because it smells nicer — at the very least it’s not terrible — and some types of tools create cool-looking plumes or aerosols.
Even though many countries have a ban on flavored vapes, there are already loopholes. Smoking companies are notoriously quick and creative in dodging legislation and getting their products out on the market.
There’s also this idea that vaping isn’t as bad as smoking. Smokers have been made to believe that vaping is better for you than cigarettes are. Some products are marketed as healthy, even. We now know, however, that this is not the case.
We have seen severe illnesses and even deaths happen, as a result of tissue damage to the lungs from vaping. The problem with vaping is that while you are not inhaling tobacco, you’re still inhaling potentially dangerous chemicals into your lungs, risking lung and cardiovascular damage.
People 21 and over who are concerned about smoke inhalation and want to quit, but are not ready to completely give up nicotine or the habit, are turning to smokeless tobacco alternatives.
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There is No Time Like the Present to Quit
You probably hear this all the time, and while it is always true, it has never been truer than now. The sooner you quit, the sooner your body and lungs start to repair. The sooner you get the worst of the withdrawal over with. And the sooner you can go run that 5k without huffing and puffing and wheezing the whole way.
Right now, however, there is another motivation that is even more immediate than the eminent heart disease and lung cancer that gets pointed out on the labels of every product you buy. The coronavirus pandemic is not going to go away overnight, and our numbers are still rising in many parts of the US. Research has shown that smokers are more at risk than nonsmokers, and taking care of your lungs has never been as important.
Some estimates indicate that the virus could stick with us for two or more years at least. You may wonder what the virus has to do with your smoking or vaping habit, so let’s take a look at just a few reasons this should be the biggest motivator yet, to get you off of smoking for good.
The pandemic has led to layoffs, furloughs and lost jobs in an unprecedented fashion. Even the Great Depression does not compare to what we are currently experiencing here in the United States. More than 36 million people are unemployed as a result of the coronavirus, and those numbers are not likely to get any better anytime soon. Many jobs are gone and it will take years to get them back.
You could be saving the money you spend on vaping and smoking, and giving yourself and your family a little more budgetary breathing room. You may spend only five to ten dollars on a pack, but that adds up pretty quickly. Add in heightened healthcare costs because you smoke, and you are looking at saving a lot of money by quitting.
While we do have a better idea of the risk factors for developing COVID-19, we still do not entirely understand the virus. We do know that it ravages the lungs in people who develop severe symptoms, and we know that if you are obese, have heart disease, are immunocompromised, or you smoke, there is a greater chance you will end up in the hospital and may need assistive devices for breathing.
Smoking and vaping cause damage to your lungs, but quitting now is the first step to healing that damage. Your lungs begin to heal within two to three weeks of quitting, and they will be almost good as new within nine months. For every day that you keep smoking or vaping, you are prolonging your own healing by at least another 24 hours.
Secondhand smoke also makes it harder to fight off respiratory infections because it still damages the lungs. Even if you confine your smoking to one room in your house, the air still gets circulated throughout.
Your family breathes in the particles and their lungs get damaged as well. People who live in the same household as a smoker are more likely to develop heart disease and other smoking-related illnesses.
You can start protecting your family today, by quitting smoking today. You will start to feel better quickly, and so will they. The sooner you quit, the sooner you will feel the benefits, so there is no day like today to get yourself on the right track toward better health.