Ex smokers

  1. Just out of curiosity, I wondered if any of you nurses, particularly those in Med-surg, theatre, had noticed improvement in former smoking patients who had quit the habit. For example, people who were smoking at time of earlier illnesses had come in after quitting and seemed to recover more quickly. Maybe the patients who smoked who used to come in constantly and are now not been seen as often would qualify. Does anyone know if there are statistics available on this?

    I smoked for roughly 40 years and have given it up three times, once for 4 years -Hypnontism, but then my husband got diagnosis of terminal illness, (not cancer) once for 6 months on zyban and now fifteen days with Champix .. maybe I just want too know if there is a good reason for giving up a habit I so dearly loved. Mind you, the best and most positive support came from the chin wag discussion board on ebay.com.au. "I want to give up smoking". Fantastic source and the ticker which marks off the time you have not smoked was a real incentive. I have got to credit this site for its help.

    It's not a trick question. I am just curious. Everyone said each time. "Your health will be better and your energy will increase. I am still waiting. My wallet certainly notices though. Hope you can help.
    Last edit by greatshakes on Apr 3, '08 : Reason: spelling
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    About greatshakes

    Joined: Nov '05; Posts: 278; Likes: 29
    Specialty: 4 year(s) of experience in aged -adolescent


  3. by   Tweety
    Maybe you won't necessarily notice a whole lot of difference. However, 10 or 20 years from now you won't be on oxygen gasping for air doing simple things like crawling out of bed in the morning, eating or going to the bathroom. Perhaps you're only benefit right now is preventative.

    Some people would say "your addiction is trying to talk you into smoking". So shake that monkey off your back.

    Good luck.
    Last edit by Tweety on Apr 3, '08
  4. by   catlynLPN
    I smoked for 18 years, and have been quit for about 10 now.
    For the last 3-4 years of smoking I stayed sick with bronchitis and had that smokers cough, too.
    The doctor told me if I didn't quit I would eventually have emphysema.
    The last time I got so sick, I ended up in the emergency room with asthmatic bronchitis, and I realized then I could not continue to smoke.
    I quit for good that time, and have not smoked one cigarette since.
    I improved immediately, I get fewer colds now, and in the 10 years since, I've had bronchitis maybe 2 times.
    Now, when I get a cold, it just stays a head cold, when I smoked, I could count on a cold going to my chest every single time.
    I am so glad I gave it up, I will never touch another cigarette.

    When I was smoking, I could get some cigarettes for about 1.10 per pack. I can't imagine having to pay around 4.00 per pack.

    On the other hand, my mother is 83 years old, and has smoked ever since I can remember, and I am 55 y/o. She never gets bronchitis, but I hear that smokers cough from her, where she coughs and it sounds loose, in the upper chest, throat area. I have begged her to quit, but she still smokes occassionally. Not as much as she used to, however.
  5. by   Daytonite
    well, about the only thing i saw was the morning, hacking cough clears up. so, does the chronic bronchitis--usually.

    i have to tell you though that what i have seen is more of a "down the road" effect. so many people i know who were former smokers and got cancer had it metastasize right to their lungs. some just got a primary lung cancer. the statistics on the relationship between smoking and lung cancer just don't lie.

    you've smoked for 40 years. at this point you can quit or keep on smoking if you want. it is a free choice. what's the point in quitting if you don't have any complications and you've already invested years in it? one of my brothers has been smoking since high school (40 years too) and has no problems from it even though he has quit and restarted several times. he just likes to smoke! i wish he wouldn't, but. . .

    i don't know what goes on in your country, but here in the u.s,, particularly here in california, some people are really fanatical about being around people who smoke and want smoking banned in public places. i've seen a lot of people die with lung cancer and other respiratory diseases as well, including emphysema. it isn't pretty to watch. i've seen a number of ex-smokers with emphysema who got lung cancers that couldn't be treated because their emphysema was so bad. i smoked for 5 years myself before i finally quit and today i've just finished chemo for a stage ii-iii colon cancer which can metastasize to the lung as well as the liver if the surgery and chemo haven't worked--i'm holding my breath that it doesn't happen. my mom had breast cancer and was a 20-year smoker. after her surgery, chemo and radiation therapy she did great, but then the cancer metastasized fast and to only one site--her lungs, and it was global. it wasn't found in her bone or brain. just her lungs. her lungs were riddled with the cancer in a matter of several weeks and her death was rapid.

    i don't know where you worked in nursing, but i primarily worked on medical and icu stepdown units and saw plenty of respiratory disease and cancer associated with smoking. many of the caring respiratory and cardiology docs wouldn't hesitate to lecture a smoker nurse about the ills of tobacco.
  6. by   greatshakes
    Thanks everyone for your posts. Well it's almost three weeks since I quit for the third and last time and I am not missing them quite as much. All smoking is banned in public places where food is being served in Australia. We have warnings like gangrene, emphysema, mouth cancer etc on our packets. Unlike you Daytonite, I don't have the vast experience you do and I so envy you that. Your job sounded so exciting and varied going by the other posts I have seen you submit. I am a school based nurse and I love my job. I didn't get the chance to do a post grad which is something I will always feel sad about. Being registered without a postgrad is a bit like being given a lovely cake as a reward after the hard work but without any icing. You feel shortchanged. I tell the kids at school to give up and some of them have. One inspired me so much he was part of the reason I gave up for the six months and our school doctor was a great help too. I do hope your condition improves. (My father had Colon cancer and also my sister but they didn't need chemo or colostomy. My father just dropped his bundle though when he thought he might have to retire. My sister is still doing nicely.) You are a very valuable resource person also and I do read a lot of your posts. All the best for you continued improvement.
  7. by   HangTen!
    I am a former smoker. I indulged for decades, honestly, I don't know how many years. It was a STRUGGLE to make it over the hump. But I did!

    The reasons for not smoking........oh my. First, the stink. And I mean stink. I had no clue how rank a smoker smells, let alone the air where they live to include furniture, walls, all household possesions and clothing.

    I so sorely regret smoking with kids! Oh my! I grew up in a smoking household, and never knew what "fresh air" or a fresh air home was. In addition, the smell of a smoker is truly nausous to others, and I feel for my patients in that regard.

    I can BREATHE, as in take a looooooooong, slooooooow, deeeeeeeeeep breath now. Even though I didn't have the smokers cough really. I do have asthma though, and as others said, I don't get bronchitis any more at all.

    I feel so Great knowing I am a good role model for my family. All my kids took up the habit too, marrying smokers themselves. Well, since I've quit, all but one of my sons is now smoking and he is working at getting off once and for all. Now I will tell you, that is a GREAT feeling. My grandson, has never been around cig smoke How awesome is that?!

    I KNEW I didn't want to be sick or debilitated in my mid to later years. I want to continue loving and enjoying life and being Active.

    Best Regards.........
  8. by   zuzi
    I am a exsmoker! I smoked from 1988 probbaly till 1996, few cigarettes at the beginning and 2 packs per day on 1996. I quiet in 1996. At 3 month in 1996 I had the first relase, I smoke at Christams party, at 6 months again , at 1 year with one of my good girl friend we somek in one night 2 packs.... then I decided that I am nicotine addicted, so I cut ever cigarette in my life. Was hard i dreamed about smoke, I stayed closed to smoke people because I liked the smell, I smelled cigarette packs till now some time I like smelling people who smoke, looool! Yup is a addiction! BUT I DON"T SMOKE from 12 years...yup
    I was happy when I smoked and was my other nature, I was depressed couple of months after I quiet and then a gain in wieght, 40 pounds, that I never loose it, before Zuzi had ony 100 pounds, after 140 pound, in the first mounts of recovery I didn't feelt the food taste, and I remember that I couldn't sleep well, or drink or eat. After I start to eat, never I had problem with breathing. But I was in love (like always, looooool) and I needed to have a healthy baby so I QUIET!
    I was very motivated to have a baby with my love one! That was all!
    The lbs gained was lost in time, I did it, you can o it also, my hyper from nicotine, is nit the same now, I am much controled, I found new ways to make friends instead to have the same addiction, "let's go out for a smoke" is not anymore in my language!

    I am addicted to AN now...oh myyyyyyyy I am a vicious girl with a lot of pasts, presents and probably future addictions, looooooool!

    I quiet smoking, you could do it also!Muaaaaaaaaaah!