Trying to quit smoking this year? Here are some tips

Smoking carries heavy risks of cancer, lung disease and coronary according to doctors. (Melanie Occhiuzzo/Southside Daily)
Smoking carries heavy risks of cancer, lung disease and coronary artery disease, according to doctors. (Melanie Occhiuzzo/Southside Daily)

Quitting smoking is a popular New Year’s resolution and with risks of cancer, coronary artery disease and lung disease, it isn’t hard to see why doctors want you to quit, too.

Dr. Anthony Quaranta is a Sentara pulmonologist who specializes in critical care medicine, pulmonary medicine and sleep medicine.

He has a few facts and tips to share about smoking to help you out.

Quaranta sees hundreds of patients a year and every time he sees a new patient who smokes he counsels them on the importance of smoking cessation.

The best way to go about quitting before you try anything else is quitting cold turkey first, Quaranta said.

He said smoking cessation is associated with significant health benefits but the benefits can be proportional to the intensity and duration of the patient’s tobacco exposure.

Smokers who quit can expect to live longer and are less likely to develop tobacco-related diseases such as coronary artery disease, cancer and lung disease, he said.

If you’ve already tried to quit cold turkey or are just interested in learning more about tobacco cessation, click here. 

Along with offering helpful advice to his patients, Quaranta also wanted to debunk a few common misconceptions about smoking and tobacco cessation.

First, he said while some may believe light cigarettes are healthier for you, they are in fact not and have just as much tar and nicotine in them.

He also touched on the popular subject of vaping and the misconception that it’s better than smoking.

He said vaping is just as harmful as smoking but there are no FDA regulations imposed on vaping products.

Finally, he wanted to let people know smoking only a few cigarettes a day is not better for you and quitting altogether would be the best course of action.

Sentara has several articles on their website about tobacco and tobacco cessation.

To read about 10 things to do besides smoking, click here.

To read about Two steps to a healthier you, click here.

To find out if you are at risk for lung cancer, click here.

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