Tobacco is Worse for the Heart Than We Thought – Here’s What You Can Do

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Tobacco is Worse for the Heart Than We Thought – Here’s What You Can Do

Cigarettes are known to have serious long-term health consequences. Tobacco weakens the immune system and leaves users vulnerable to diseases like cancer and diabetes. Its adverse effects can also manifest in your appearance. Smokers are known to show signs of premature aging and poor oral health.

In particular, however, smoking severely impacts cardiovascular health. Smoking causes blocked arteries, leading to coronary heart disease and stroke. But researchers from Herlev and Gentofte Hospital in Copenhagen have found that smoking is worse for the heart than we initially thought.

Here’s what you need to know:

How smoking changes the structure of your heart

Research from Herlev and Gentofte Hospital shows that smoking not only impairs the heart’s health and blood vessels but also weakens the heart’s structure.

Among the researchers’ participant pool of over 3,800 participants, current smokers had thicker, heavier, and weaker hearts compared to non-smokers. They also found changes in the structure of the left heart chamber, which is the most critical part of the heart. As a result, their hearts are less able to pump blood. Smokers’ hearts also showed damage in the vascular and blood vessel walls, reducing elasticity and impairing the inner layer of the blood vessels.

While these deformities may lead to many short- and long-term health complications, smoking cessation has been found to restore the heart to a certain extent. Quitting immediately can reduce heart rate and blood pressure. In the long run, it may also allow the heart to regain its former structure and functions.

Tobacco is Worse for the Heart Than We Thought – Here’s What You Can Do

What you can do to quit cigarettes

Smoking cessation must be a gradual transition to lower nicotine doses so that you don’t suffer from withdrawal symptoms. To quit tobacco, many smokers have turned to e-cigarettes. However, studies endorsed by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute show that prolonged vaping can seriously impair the function of blood vessels and increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Instead, it’s better to use smokeless and tobacco-free nicotine products.

You can try nicotine pouches, which are small bags of tobacco-free nicotine that you tuck under your lip. The nicotine pouches listed on Prilla come in different flavors and strengths so that you can slowly transition to lower doses of nicotine while enjoying a host of flavors that take your mind off your tobacco cravings. Pouches are also widely accessible since they can be delivered within a few days anywhere in the US. You can also try nicotine patches like the NicoDerm CQ Patches by GlaxoSmithKline, which are steadily growing in use. They are widely available in pharmacies and can easily be stuck onto your skin. This allows you to receive a steady stream of nicotine for up to 24 hours.

In addition to nicotine replacements, you may also benefit from seeking social support from counselors or loved ones. Holding yourself accountable by informing others of your intentions reflects a more sincere intent to quit smoking. Moreover, counselors can link you to more structured interventions. These include telephone helplines or quitlines, support groups, and internet-based programs. This can help you feel more empowered and supported when experiencing withdrawal symptoms.

Smoking can be more detrimental to the heart than we initially thought. Fortunately, seeking out smoking cessation through nicotine replacements and social and behavioral interventions can restore the heart’s health. If you want more news on health and science, you can find more here at Blaze Trends.

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