This graph is one that I refer to on a daily basis when counseling patients about smoking. Look at it very carefully – especially if you are planning on giving up. It gives a clear guide as to when is the best time. Many patients assume that when they stop smoking their lungs will improve. Wrong.
I do not show it to many patients over the age of 50 because it is depressing – for them and me! The dilemma is that if you are over 45 your lungs will continue to deteriorate and you will probably reach lung disability in your latter years. You still gain increased quality and quantity of life but the loss of lung volume becomes symptomatic.
So, when is the best time to quit? This is a no brainer. Today. Now. Immediately. It does not matter how – try everything, if one system does not do it for you try the next option. There is lots of help out there and the benefits are obvious – quality and quantity of life!