If you use tobacco, there are reasons for you to quit.

The rewards of quitting begin immediately. You’ll experience the benefits of not using tobacco within 20 minutes of quitting, and the benefits will accumulate. Quitting tobacco will improve your health, your finances, your self-esteem and your everyday life.

Smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States.

Cigarette smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke cause an estimated average of 438,000 premature deaths each year in the United States. Of these premature deaths:

  • 40 percent are from cancer. Cigarette smoking causes many types of cancer, including cancers of the lung, esophagus, larynx (voice box), mouth, throat, kidney, bladder, pancreas, stomach, and cervix, as well as acute myeloid leukemia.
  • 35 percent are from heart disease and stroke.
  • 25 percent are from lung disease. This includes chronic lung diseases, bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma.

Smoking changes the brain.

According to recent research at the National Institute on Drug Abuse, nicotine addiction caused by smoking produces long-lasting chemical changes in the brain similar to changes that take place when someone uses drugs like heroine or cocaine – more evidence of the addictive, destructive nature of nicotine.

It’s not too late to reverse the effects of smoking.

An overwhelming amount of damage to your health can be reversed by quitting. Studies have shown that quitting at around age 30 reduces the chance of dying from smoking-related diseases by more than 90%. If you quit at around age 50, you reduce the risk of dying prematurely by 50% compared with those who continue to smoke. Even those who quit at around age 60 or older live longer than those who continue to smoke.

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