Science News

National No Smoking Day Coming Up

Sun, 10th Mar 2002

Part of the show Joe Herbert discusses the Brain, Stress and Depression

It's National No Smoking day on Wednesday so now's your chance to give up for good. But you might be more successful armed with a few facts to help you.
- 75% of smokers say they want to stop, but 10 years later 65% of them will still be smoking.
- Your chance of remaining a non-smoker for over a year if you decide to give up one day "just like that" is about 5%
- If you approach your doctor for some advice your chances rise to about 6%
- If you use nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), and that's in the form of chewing gum or patches, your chances increase to 15%
- If you use Zyban, the relatively-new anti-smoking drug, then your chances are best of all at about 25-30%
- Hypnosis and certain pyschological techniques also work well for some people and have about a 20% success rate.
So the moral is, it's very tough giving up smoking but here's why you should do it:
- Smoking directly kills over 110,000 people in the UK a year - that's the same as a jumbo-jet crashing every day.
- Smoking causes heart disease, strokes and cancers, not just of the lungs but also the stomach, bowel, pancreas and breast. Statistically-speaking smoking is far worse for your heart and blood vessels than for your lungs. Most smokers don't live long enough to get cancer because they die of heart disease first.
- If you are a woman who has not yet had children, you are actually harming your future babies because you carry all of your eggs around with you from the moment you are born, and chemicals in tobacco smoke damage eggs.
- 1 year after quitting, your risk of having a heart attack drops to less than half what it was previously.
- 10 years after quitting, your risk of lung cancer, strokes and heart attacks is practically the same as if you had never smoked.


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