By PSP Health Promotion
The World Health Organization created World No Tobacco Day almost 35 years ago to draw global attention to the tobacco epidemic and the preventable death and disease it causes. There is no better time than now to revisit the importance of quitting smoking and the added risks associated with the COVID-19 global pandemic.
Smoking can increase the risk of developing more severe respiratory infections because it impairs lung function, makes it harder to fight off the virus, and makes you more vulnerable to developing severe disease resulting from COVID-19.
The act of smoking can potentially also increase chances of contracting COVID-19:
- -Deeper inhalation of the air around you, often in closely confined smoking areas
- -Possible sharing of cigarettes and tobacco smoking devices
- -Frequent hand to mouth contact
Smoking is a modifiable risk-factor. It can be changed!
Can people who have already developed smoking-related health problems still benefit from quitting? Yes! If you quit at age…
- 30: gain almost 10 years of life expectancy.
- 40: gain 9 years of life expectancy.
- 50: gain 6 years of life expectancy.
- 60: gain 3 years of life expectancy.
- After the onset of a life-threatening disease: There is a rapid benefit for people who quit smoking after having a heart attack: it will reduce their chances of having another heart attack by 50%.
Pledge to Quit
Expand your desire to quit by simply making a statement and committing it to paper. Making a pledge increases the chances of staying quit, and when prominently posted, can help bring awareness to those around you that you are committed to improving your health.
Think about all the reasons you want to quit. How will your life and health improve for yourself and those around you? On May 31, World No Tobacco Day, start your plan for a tobacco-free you!