Post Natal Nurse Home Visitor Program
Pharmacy Residency (PGY1)

How Does Quitting Smoking Benefit Your Health?

Cigarette smoking is the number one cause of preventable death worldwide and smokers have an increased risk of having heart disease and cancer in the lungs, liver, pancreas, kidneys, stomach and cervix. So, if you don’t smoke or use tobacco products, don’t start!

One year after quitting smoking, your risk of heart disease decreases to half that of someone who still smokes. After 5 to 15 years, the risk of stroke is the same as a person who never smoked.


Tips on how to Quit Smoking


Tobacco dependence

Tobacco dependence is a two-part problem - the physical addiction and the mental addiction based on the habit and the emotional dependence to nicotine. Treating both aspects of dependence can help people who smoke quit successfully.

  1. Physiological - use medication for cessation
  2. Behavioral - make a plan by attending the group classes or meeting with your healthcare provider

Withdrawal effects

Quitting smoking often causes serious withdrawal symptoms. Most symptoms appear within the first one to two days, peak within the first week and then subside within two to four weeks.

  1. Irritability/Frustration/Anger
  2. Anxiety
  3. Difficulty concentrating
  4. Restlessness/impatience
  5. Depressed Mood/Depression
  6. Insomnia
  7. Impaired performance
  8. Increased appetite/weight gain
  9. Cravings

Smoking Cessation medications (FDA Approved)

Below is a list of safe and effective medications offered at Parkland that lessen the cravings and pleasure of smoking.

  • NRTs/nicotine Replacement Therapy: patch, gum, lozenges, mini-lozenges
  • Varenicline(Chantix)
  • Bupropion( Wellbutrin/Zyban)

Tips for quitting smoking

Many people who quit smoking face the same challenges. Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Anticipate upcoming challenges, learn to predict your moods and develop a substitute plan for tobacco use.
  • Change your normal routine, find new activities to keep your hand, mouth and mind busy.
  • Do exercise- go for a walk or go to the gym to perk you up and prevent you from overeating.
  • Try relaxation exercises to calm you down and lessen your stress.
  • Remind yourself of the decision to quit and make a list of your reasons for not smoking.
  • Ask for support and tolerance from coworkers, friends and family members to help you with your plan to quit smoking

Other resources for quitting smoking

You can also use the following resources for more help:

  1. American Lung Association: 1-800-586-4872 or 1-800-LUNGUSA and visit for information on E-cigarettes and Vaping
  2. American Cancer Society: 1-800-227-2345
  3. American Heart Association: 1-800-242-8721
  4. Nicotine Anonymous: 214-327-1633
  5. YES QUIT - the Texas tobacco quitline: Call 1-877-937-7848 or find more information online at
  6. UT Southwestern Nicotine Cessation Program: call 1-833-722-6237 or email for more information
  7. Dallas County Health and Human Services Adult Tobacco Use Cessation Program: Call 214-819-5115
  8. U.S Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Tobacco quitline - If you are a U.S. veteran, you can call 1-855-784-8838 or text VET to 47848