Smoking timeline of recovery

Giving up smoking has positive impacts that will last for the rest of your life. Here's our timeline of benefits to going smoke-free.

Within the first three days… your breathing will become easier as your airways start to clear and relax. You may well feel that your energy levels have increased.

After a month… improved blood circulation in your skin will lead to an a healthier complexion

Between three and nine months… any coughs, wheezes and breathing problems will improve as your lung function increases by up to 10%

After a year… your risk of a heart attack is halved.

And after ten years… your risk of cancer is also halved.

After 15 years… your heart attack risk is the same as non-smoker!

The clock is ticking - make the decision to quit.

SmokeFree is the NHS smoking cessation support programme. It's a great source of information, advice and support and there's even a telephone helpline where you can talk to a smoking cessation expert - all free of charge. Order your QuitKit now by visiting or call the SmokeFree helpline on 0800 022 4332.

In the meantime, here are some top tips for stopping smoking:

  • Set a date for stopping and tell your friends and family how important this is to you
  • Get rid of lighters, ashtrays and all cigarettes
  • Prepare for withdrawal symptoms and take steps to minimise these
  • Discuss medication with your doctor - NRT, Zyban and Champix
  • Consider alternative approaches such as hypnotherapy and acupuncture
  • Stay positive if you lapse - it can happen to anybody. Rather than worry about it, simply set a new date for stopping and start again

Do it now - this is arguably one of the most significant health choices you will ever make.


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