This is what happens to your body when you stop smoking


We all know what havoc smoking wreaks on the body. Move along please, nothing new to see there.

But did you also know what quitting smoking does to your body?

The prospect of ditching the fags can be overwhelming, especially as short term changes and improvement to health are hard to detect at first.

So this step-by-step guide to how your body reacts to giving up - showing just how fast it can make a difference - is an amazing motivational tool.

AsapSCIENCE posted this video just this week, and it's already been viewed more than 1,500,000 times.

To summarise, here's what happens to your body after you quit...

*This can vary based on average number of cigarettes you smoke

20 minutes:

  • Heart rate and blood pressure return to normal (epinephrine and norepinephrine from the nicotine increase heart rate and narrow blood vessels)
  • Cold feeling in extremities caused by nicotine returns to normal

Two hours:

  • Nicotine cravings begin, causing moodiness, drowsiness and difficulty sleeping
  • This is due to decrease in dopamine which is released by nicotine

Eight hours:

  • Oxygen in the bloodstream returns to normal, after inhaled carbon monoxide clears

24 hours:

  • Coughing increases as the body clears toxins from the lungs
  • Risk of developing coronary artery diseases decreases

48 hours:

  • Nicotine and its metabolites are completely eliminated from the body
  • Damaged nerve endings begin to regrow
  • Taste buds that were damaged by tar and chemicals begin to regain their sensitivity (food tastes better)

72 hours:

  • Nicotine withdrawal peaks, causing headaches, nausea, cramps and anxiety or depression

One month:

  • Risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular diseases has decreased

Three - nine months:

  • Damaged hair-like structures in the lung which sweep away dust are repaired
  • Symptoms like coughing and shortness of breath are almost eliminated

One year:

  • Risk of developing heart disease as a result of deposits of fatty materials or scar tissue decreases by almost 50 per cent

10 years:

  • Chance of developing lung cancer decreases by 50 per cent compared to if you hadn't quit

And after 15 years...

The risk of heart attack returns to the rate of someone who has never smoked in their life.


More: The countries that love smoking cigarettes the most, mapped

More: This video will make you want to quit smoking cigarettes immediately

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