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How to quit smoking and improve my lung condition?

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Addiction Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2002
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I want to quit smoking. Avg 4 a day. Should i quit suddenly or reduce my consumption within week. After quitting how can i recover my lungs conditions. Any special diet/ exercise??
Posted Mon, 30 Dec 2013 in Smoking and Alcohol Addiction
Answered by Dr. Preeti Parakh 49 minutes later
Brief Answer: Explained below. Detailed Answer: Hi XXXXXXX Welcome to Healthcare Magic! It is nice to know that you wish to quit smoking. There are three main strategies you can use to quit. 1) There are medicines available which reduce the craving for nicotine and make it easier to quit. These are started before quitting and after these become effective, a quit-date is set. On the pre-appointed date, you quit. Because of the medicine's effect, it is easier to remain abstinent. After you have been abstinent for a few months, the medicines are stopped. The two medicines that are commonly used are bupropion and varenicline. Bupropion is cheaper than varenicline. Varenicline is somewhat more effective. 2) You can opt to stop smoking and use other forms of nicotine replacement when you are unable to control the craving. Nicotine containing chewing gums are available for this purpose. After a few days, you can reduce the number of chewing gums that you are taking per day and gradually taper it off. These save you from the harmful effects of smoke, but are still not harmless as they contain nicotine. 3) You can also try gradually reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke daily. Also try to reduce the number of puffs you take from each cigarette and throw away after just one or two puffs. Gradually your body will get used to the lower dosage of nicotine and you will be able to taper it off with only mild withdrawal symptoms. Since you are smoking around four cigarettes per day, if you are motivated enough, I think you can quit using either the second or the third option. If that doesn't work, the first option of using medicines is always open for you. Regarding improving lung function, after you quit smoking, your body starts healing itself within the first hour. You will also notice that you are coughing more after you quit as the lungs start expelling the tar and other harmful substances that have accumulated in the lungs. The best thing you can do to aid this process would be to remain off smoking and avoid passive smoking as well. There are some exercises that are usually recommended for people with lung diseases to improve their lung function. I do not think you actually need them but if you do them, they will certainly benefit you. You can find detailed instructions with pictures online on many sites. I have included one link for you ( WWW.WWWW.WW . Hope this helps you. Please feel free to ask if you need any clarifications. Dr Preeti Parakh MD Psychiatry
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