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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Article Home Mental and Behavioural Disorders Quit Smoking

Quit Smoking

Cigarette smoking kills nearly about 420,000 people a year, making it more lethal than AIDS, accidents, homicides, suicides, drug overdoses, and fire. Smoking accounts for 28% of all cancer deaths, and responsible for 85% of lung cancers.


Risk factors

Heart disease

  • Smoking lowers HDL levels (the so-called good cholesterol) even in adolescents.
  • It causes deterioration of elastic properties in the aorta, the largest blood vessel in the body, and increases the risk for blood clots. It increases the activity of the sympathetic nervous system (which regulates the heart and blood vessels).
  • Tobacco smoke may increase cardiovascular disease in women through an effect on hormones that causes estrogen deficiency.



Smoking is the cause of 85% of all cases of lung cancer in 2000, account for 28% of all cancer deaths. Quitting reduces the risk for lung cancer, even well into middle age.

Dementia and neurologic diseases

People who smoke a pack a day have almost two and a half times the risk of stroke as non-smokers.


Lung disease

Smoking is associated with a higher risk for nearly all major lung diseases, including pneumonia, flu, bronchitis, and emphysema.

Female infertility and pregnancy

  • Greater risk for infertility in women.
  • Greater risk for ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage
  • Greater risk for stillbirth, prematurity, and low-birth weight
  • Smoking reduces folate levels, a B vitamin that is important for preventing birth defects
  • Women who smoke may pass genetic mutations that increase cancer risks to their unborn babies

Male sexuality and reproduction

  • Heavy smoking is frequently cited as a contributory factor in impotence because it decreases the amount of blood flowing into the penis.
  • Smoking also reduces sperm density and their motility, increasing the risk for infertility.


Behavioral and Social Problems


Children of smoking mothers are more likely to have more motor control problems, perception impairments, attention disabilities, and social problems than children of non-smoking mothers. Some reasons for these associations have been suggested:


Effects on bones and joints


Smoking impairs formation of new bone and women who smoke are at high risk for osteoporosis.

Methods to quit smoking

Nicotine replacement

  • Nicotine patches:
  • Nicotine gum:
  • Nicotine inhaler
  • Nicotine nasal spray
  • Nicotine tablet


Other methods

  • Put it on paper
  • Seek support

  • Take it slow

  • Avoid smoking triggers

  • Try a stop-smoking product

  • Distract yourselfLearn from your mistakes

Withdrawal effects of smoking

Withdrawal symptoms begin as soon as four hours after the last cigarette, generally peak in intensity at three to five days, and disappear after two weeks.

They include both physical and mental symptoms. During the quitting process people should consider the physical symptoms like tingling in the hands and feet, sweating, intestinal disorders (cramps, nausea), and headache.