Health Benefits of Quitting

Smoking is the leading cause of heart attacks and heart disease. But many of these heart risks can be reversed simply by quitting smoking.

Quitting smoking will improve your night vision and help preserve your overall vision by stopping the damage that smoking does to your eyes.

Quitting smoking is better than anti-aging lotion. Quitting can help clear up blemishes and protect your skin from premature aging and wrinkling.

Quitting smoking will help increase the availability of oxygen in your blood, and your muscles will become stronger and healthier.

Fact Sheet

  • Within 20 minutes, your blood pressure and pulse drop to normal and your body temperature in your hands and feet increase to normal.
  • After 8 hours, carbon monoxide levels in the blood drop to normal and your oxygen level increases.
  • After 24 hours, your breath, hair, and body stop smelling like smoke. Your chances of a heart attack decreases.
  • After 48 hours, your nerve endings recover. Your sense of taste and smell improve.
  • After 72 hours, the nicotine is out of your body. Bronchial tubes relax, making breathing easier.
  • After 2 weeks to 3 months, your lungs can hold more air. Exercise becomes easier and your circulation increases.
  • After 1 to 9 months, coughing, congestion, fatigue and shortness of breath decrease. The cilia (tiny hair cells) in your lungs regrow, which cleans the lungs and helps prevent infections. Overall, your body energy increases.
  • After 1 year, your risk of coronary heart disease is cut in half.
  • After 5 years, your risk of a stroke is reduced to that of a non-smoker.


Source: County of Los Angeles Public Health Working for You (2015).
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