Myth: I can’t undo the damage from smoking
Myth: The damage from smoking can never be undone. A smoker’s lungs can never recover.
That’s not true! The picture above is of the tiny hairs in your lungs called cilia, which protect the lungs from infection, and clean out all the gunk.
These hairs are destroyed by the poisons in cigarette smoke, but when you quit smoking, they can grow back, and continue their job of keeping your lungs clean so you can breathe easy.
But the longer you smoke, the more likely you are to do permanent damage to the cilia and your lungs.
Check out this Benefits of Quitting body map that shows how your health improves when you stop smoking.
Fact: In just 20 minutes, blood pressure and heart rate return to normal. Within 24 hours, your heart attack risk begins falling. In the first weeks after quitting, tiny cilia (which are the tiny hairs on your lungs that work to clean them) start back to work sweeping irritants out of the lungs.
Within a year, your risk of developing heart disease drops to half that of people who still smoke. And after 10 smoke-free years, you’re no more likely to die of lung cancer than someone who never smoked.