“COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) is caused by damage to the lungs over a long period of time, usually from smoking. Damage to your lungs can’t be undone, but there are ways to prevent more damage and breathe easier. If you currently smoke, one step you can take is to stop smoking. Quitting smoking will help slow down the disease and improve your quality of life. Quitting is hard. But you don’t have to do it alone. Here’s a resource with information about quitting.
Does quitting smoking make a difference?
You may feel that your lungs are already so damaged from smoking that it doesn’t matter if you keep smoking or quit. But even though COPD can’t be cured, you can still slow down the disease’s progress and reduce symptoms by not smoking. If you quit now, you can probably avoid the advanced stages of COPD and delay worsening symptoms until much later in life. Quitting at an earlier stage can be even more beneficial because long-term damage won’t have had a chance to build up over time.
What about people who have COPD already?
If you already have chronic lung disease, quitting smoking will probably reduce the intensity of your symptoms. But some people may get worse or experience an unexpected flare-up before getting better again. If you already have severe COPD, talk to your doctor about stopping smoking. There are medications that can help prevent worsening lung function in patients with severe COPD. Some people respond to these medications better than others do. So, it helps to talk with your doctor about different treatment options and how they might work for you.
What can I do to quit smoking?
Here are some ways to help you quit smoking: Talk to your doctor about the best way for you to stop. There are medications, nicotine replacement, and other treatments that can help.
- Join one of the many quitting programs that specifically aim to help smokers quit, such as the U.S. Lifeline. Find a support group in your community that helps people stop smoking, such as Lung Association in the U.S. You can also join Facebook groups for support and more information about quitting smoking.
- Reach out to your loved ones and let them know of your plan to quit. Tell them that you want their help, and ask for it.
- Avoid triggers: During the early days of quitting, avoid people and places that encourage you to smoke. It’s easier if you have someone to go with you or a support person who can help keep you motivated. Take short walks, especially if cravings come on during the day. Don’t give up on a walk just because it feels difficult at times. Keep going – it will get easier as time goes by.
- Track your progress: Keep a record of how many cigarettes you don’t smoke each week or each month. Work toward a goal and keep doing it, no matter what. There are also apps that can track your progress and help you with cravings, such as Smoke Free by Allen Carr.
Remember to celebrate: Every day that goes by without a cigarette is an accomplishment and should be applauded! Make sure to acknowledge your achievement with a reward – whether it’s something small, such as watching your favorite TV show, or something more substantial, like taking a trip you’ve always wanted to take. ”
Quitting smoking is not easy, but it’s worth it! We are glad to guide you for the benefits of quitting smoking and strategies for quitting. Explaining nicotine dependence and links to info on nicotine replacement therapy.