What are the benefits of quitting smoking? 

Smoking is the number one cause of premature death and preventable disease in the UK. We can help you quit – with our help it’s easier than you think!

Do you know all the benefits of quitting smoking? As well as reducing your risk of serious conditions such as lung cancer, you will enjoy multiple health benefits right away, have more money in your wallet and have better relationships with loved ones. Participating in campaigns can help you along this journey, as you can connect with others going through the same thing and access a wealth of resources to support you.

When you give up cigarettes for good, you’ll find that your body and brain go through a series of positive changes, day by day, week by week.

Your body can recover, you’ll look better, have more energy and feel healthier all around.

So, if you’re wondering what the health benefits of quitting smoking are, read on as we tell you everything you need to know about the positive changes you’ll experience, the timeline for stopping smoking and where you can find services to help you become smokefree.

What your GP wants you to know about the benefits of quitting smoking

What happens to my body when I stop smoking?

As well as long-term benefits to your health, there are many short-term effects that you will experience once you stop smoking.

Within the next few days, you’ll find:

  • Your body has flushed the carbon monoxide from your body, blood levels will return to normal, and your oxygen levels increase.
  • Receptors in your nerves begin to heal and your sense of taste and smell will be back to normal.
  • Your blood circulation has improved, and you’ve already reduced your risk of heart disease.
  • Any nicotine in your body will now be completely flushed from your system. You may experience Nicotine withdrawal symptoms.

Within months of stopping smoking, you’ll find: 

  • Your lungs have begun healing.
  • Cilia inside your lungs will have recovered from the effects of cigarette smoke.
  • You will have fewer coughing bouts and shortness of breath and will find it easier to exercise.
  • You could have saved nearly £1000. Check out our Stop Smoking Calculator to see how much you could save

What happens after a year of quitting smoking?

  • When you’ve quit smoking for a year, your risk of coronary heart disease will have decreased by 50% half.
  • You’ll notice an improvement in lung function for those living with mild to moderate hronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).


Read how others successfully quit smoking

Men in a group, smoking

I couldn’t imagine how much my life would change

John overcame financial stress when he quit smoking. Find out about his experience as a homeless smoker, how much money he saved by quitting, and how quitting transformed his life.

Read more
Marisa White stopped smoking by nicotine vaping

I’m excited about my future having quit smoking

The world is a bigger and better place when you’re not smoking – Find out how Marisa went from child smoker to smoke free with the support of a Stop Smoking Advisor.

Read more

What are the long term benefits of quitting smoking?

  • After 5 years without a cigarette, ex-smokers will have lowered their risk of blood clots and stroke.
  • At the 10-year mark, you’ve cut your chances of dying from lung cancer in half, and dramatically reduce your likelihood of getting mouth, throat or pancreatic cancer.
  • People who haven’t smoked for 15 years have reduced their chances of developing heart disease to the same level as someone who has never smoked. Your chances of getting pancreatic cancer are the same as a non-smoker too.
  • After 20 years smokefree, your risk of dying from smoking-related causes such as lung disease or cancer is now as low as someone who has never smoked a cigarette in their life.

What are the psychological benefits of quitting smoking?

The mental health benefits of quitting smoking are huge; it can boost mood and help smokers experiencing stress, depression and anxiety.

But why does smoking make people feel relaxed? It’s a common misconception that smoking helps people to relax when it scientifically heightens feelings of stress and anxiety.

The toxic substances found in cigarettes interrupts chemicals in our brain. When a person hasn’t had a cigarette for a while, smokers can become irritable and anxious. This feeling is temporarily relieved when inhaling a cigarette, thus smokers associate cigarettes with improving their mood.

Smokers with mental health issues are more likely to die 10 – 20 years younger than those not experiencing mental health problems, require higher doses of medicine and tend to smoke more heavily.

Any side-effects smokers may experience from quitting smoking are temporary. As your body begins to recover, each day you will find you will become fitter, stronger and healthier with more energy as time passes.

Help with quitting smoking

There are many ways to stop smoking and finding the right combination of support, medicine and other products is key to becoming smokefree for good.

You are more likely to quit smoking by mixing and matching personal support like motivational support from a health adviser with NRT or prescription medication and e-cigarettes.

There is lots of free support available throughout London to help you to quit smoking. Ring the Stop Smoking Helpline today and speak to our team of friendly advisers who can tailor support to help you quit smoking for good.

What would work best for you? Get in touch with us today and make that first step to quitting smoking now.