Stopping smoking


Smoking (inhaled or second-hand cigarette smoke) is the leading cause of COPD. This is because the smoke enters your lungs and affects your airways (bronchi, bronchioles and alveoli), which can cause:

  • Inflamed (swollen) airways
  • Increased mucus build-up
  • Decreased elasticity – just as a balloon deflates when you let go of the end, so do your lungs when you breathe out. If this elasticity decreases, it is harder for your lungs to deflate and harder for you to breathe out

But there’s good news. No matter what stage of COPD you’re at, it’s never too late to stop smoking. In fact, it’s one of the best things you could do.

  • Your lung function may be better once you stop smoking
  • By stopping smoking, you prevent your friends and family from further exposure to cigarette smoke
  • Quitting smoking will save you money – potentially hundreds of dollars a year

Make now the right time to begin your journey, one day at a time, towards your last cigarette.

What happens to my lungs if I stop smoking?
This image shows the effects of stopping smoking on an average person:Novartis_COPD_quit_smoking_quotecard_0.3_150421We asked the COPD: Life is Calling Facebook community for advice on how to quit. Have you tried any of these?

Stop smoking tips from users

Also read

Megan helped care for her friend Phyl who was diagnosed with COPD in 2010 and had been a smoker for 60 years.

Phyl, Living with COPD

“It’s never too late to quit…forgive your past, believe in yourself and you can do it. You trained your brain to be a smoker…now you retrain to be a non-smoker.”

Fatima, Living with COPD

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April 2016