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What does 20 years of smoking do to your lungs?

Smoking and long-term effects on the lungsPackyears, that is the term for the years in which a smoker smokes a pack a day. A quarter of heavy smokers do not reach 65. Light smokers are better off, but there are still all kinds of dangers lurking. Does it still make sense to quit smoking, or can you just finish the ride and enjoy the time you have left?

Smoking causes more like cancer

As positive news, we can report that the number of smokers is decreasing every year. As a less good report, this is partly due to the 20,000 deaths who die from the effects of smoking. If you stop smoking before your 50th birthday, you can not remove the consequences, but you can significantly reduce them, after which the problems pile up. Although younger smokers have a less increased risk of cancer if they stop in time, the DNA can be modified. And this in turn leads to an increased risk of various disorders in the long term.


The risk of cancer is very high in people who have smoked heavily for 20 years or more. When you can quit before the age of 35, the risks are still fairly limited, although you will never get to the level of a non-smoker. Doctors refer to pulmonary emphysema as permanent damage. The lung contents decrease due to smoking, and when this tissue disappears, it will not return.

Just raising the price doesn't help enough

More excise taxes can encourage people to quit, but more is needed to persuade smokers. With good support, and both physical and psychological measures to get rid of the addiction. Various methods are mentioned, such as e-cigarettes, nicotine patches or even hypnosis. Even if you are not afraid of dying younger, you will have to accept that the body is getting weaker. Old age comes with flaws, but it is not the intention to encourage smoking.