Smoking,,,: Smoking ,,, Im 64 years... - British Heart Fou...

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Jamesy12 profile image

Smoking ,,,

Im 64 years old now been healthy and fairly fit hard working kind a guy hardly got a cold once every three To five years maybe even though it was a mild cold, never suffered any kind of illness, apart from after the age of 58 a few pains in my legs which kept me awake at night took some pain killers and the pain was gone,,,, then on Boxing Day2021 about 10 pm I had a heart attack didn’t realise it until the paramedics that came to the house to to get me to hospital so they could operate on me, was constantly talking to the paramedic on the half hour journey to the hospital and asked her what was happening to me she then said ,,,, you’re having a heart attack I remember saying to the paramedic I should try and stay calm and relax ,,she said yes, still didn’t sink in how serious this was, not a a clue, stayed awake throughout the operation the surgeon put in a stent , put me in a hospital bed and onto the ward,,,, then after an hour it hit me ,,, hey you have had a heart attack,,, a blockage in one of the my main arteries to my heart,,, I have had to give up a few regular things I usually do and take for granted, drinking,,, smoking,,, after reading some of the reviews on here makes me think that I probably won’t be able to give up smoking anytime soon lol ,,, the drinking was hard enough,,, but smoking is proving to be the addiction not just an addiction it’s a life long habit dam I do hope I can give up smoking,,,

Regards to all .

64 Replies

Hello & Welcome :-)

I am glad they got you to the Hospital and got that stent in and have given you a second chance which most on here have been lucky to get as plenty dont

Heart attacks can happen to anyone no matter how young , how old how fit or healthy we think we are

I was a smoker and I did enjoy smoking I will not lie over that one

I never thought I would give up in a million years and neither did anyone that knew me

3 years ago before my heart attacks which resulted in a triple Bypass op I got double pneumonia which took me in resuscitation with Doctors fighting to save me and I remember well how it felt trying to breath I thought it was over but they did save me and from that moment on something just flicked in my head and said I will never smoke again as I would hate to die of a smoke related illness where you were fighting to breathe and I did not have another one and I was shocked as others were to that I stopped

They have the patches now , even vaping which some might disagree with but it is better than smoking

I hope this does not sound like I am lecturing as an ex smoker I hated if anyone tried to do that to me and I therefore would not want someone to think I was doing that to them either

After the pneumonia a year and a half later I had my first heart attack , there were lot's of things that contributed to my heart attacks but I think we all know smoking is one and even though I had been stopped a year and a half prior it no doubt after all the years I smoked will have played a part , I was just glad I had stopped before the heart attacks or who knows it could have been worse

After a year of stopping smoking as I suffer with anxiety , I was having a real bad day my anxiety was through the roof

I thought I know a cigarette will help me feel calmer and I got a packet

I could not get in them quick enough thinking this will solve everything , I lit one up took about 4 puffs threw it on the floor and it was the most disgusting thing I had ever tasted

I was in shock on how on earth I could have smoked all those years and thought it was nice !

But one thing that one cigarette did after a year of not smoking was let me know for sure it is an addiction and once you get past that they are not nice or needed at all and all they can do is affect your health

I must say as well the price of them and looking back the money I wasted compared to now I have always got money in my purse and bought so many lovely things that don't ruin my health which is a lot nicer than smoking :-)

An odd drink of red wine or something would less harm you and because you have had a stent please do not be under the impression that another artery could not get blocked , health wise we now have to do everything we can to protect our second chance :-)

I do now sound like I am giving a lecture ( sorry ) but I just want everyone on here to live long and happy lifes :-)

There is a non smoking support group on here as well I am not sure if you have seen it ? I will put the link on for you to have a look it could help , I joined it when I first stopped and they were so encouraging and supportive and helpful to :-)

All I can say is never say never and if I can stop and I was 30 to 40 a day for about 40 years anyone can :-)

Lovely to have you in the Community and I hope you find it helpful when you need help or feel the need to ask questions or have a talk about how you are feeling :-) x

Jamesy12 profile image
Jamesy12 in reply to BeKind28

Hi thanks for the welcome, anxiety seems to be a lot of my problem, and also proudness to proud to admit that I may fail to to do the right thing to come to teams with something that I should do i need to do seems impossible,, who now’s maybe I could give up in time,, I’ll give it my best short,, and hopefully I will learn to deal with my anxiety.Regards


BeKind28 profile image
BeKind28 in reply to Jamesy12

Hello :-)

I smoked because I believed it calmed down my anxiety but it never did and I only realised that after I stopped

What is that well known saying

Pride comes before a fall ?

No one is a failure because we can try and if we fail we try , try , try again till we succeed :-)

Please don't be in any doubt that you have had a warning and if you carry on smoking next time you may not be as lucky :-)

I really hope you will try as I said we are the lucky ones we have to make sure it stays that way :-) x

Jamesy12 profile image
Jamesy12 in reply to BeKind28

Thanks for the positive feedback,, deep down I feel that I would give up smoking,, like most things in my life I just need that right moment when I get it ,, that feeling to give it up,,Regards


BeKind28 profile image
BeKind28 in reply to Jamesy12

I always thought that way and my moment was a team of Doctors trying to keep me breathing

Don't wait for that moment whatever you do :-)

Smoking is not just about the heart the damage to the lungs the list goes on but it is your body and of course your choice and I do honestly hope you make the right one :-) x

Whether it is an addiction or not you HAVE to give up smoking! I gave up smoking in 2003 and had my bypass in 2017, the GP told me that the damage caused by smoking was irreversible so some of the damage is already done, I was also diabetic and my father died at 52 of a cardiac arrest, there is a history in his family.I stopped cold turkey, at that time I had no idea what lay ahead, you do. I have some sympathy with you as with all addictions they are not easy to go without, but having had a HUGE warning and are still here to talk about it, the smokes have to go.

Sorry I am not more sympathetic but the damage you continue to do to your heart and lungs if you continue to smoke is really unjustifiable and this coming from an ex smoker.

Jamesy12 profile image
Jamesy12 in reply to Heather1957

Hi for reading my post, and I understand that smoking needs to go, as I go through the hours and days ahead I’m hoping to that my chances of giving up improve,,.

Welcome to the forum. I had a heart attack/cardiac arrest in December 2018, left anterior descending artery almost completely blocked, had one stent and put into induced coma for a day, kept in ICU/ ACU for 6 days. The morning after being brought out of the induced coma a nurse slapped a nicotine patch on my arm.Later that day the consultants did their rounds and got to me and basically said I'd been very lucky, there was a very high chance that I wouldn't make it, The next comment was "There are a number of things you need to do as regards lifestyle, but foremost of them is stop smoking. If you don't want to end up back in here via a blue lighted ambulance, one of the best ways to try to prevent that is stop smoking"

I was 64 when I had my event, and had been smoking for almost 50 years, around 30 a day. I've tried so many times to stop and actually did manage it for a few days/weeks, even a couple of months once, but always ended up smoking again. So as someone who has smoked their whole life and tried many times to stop, I know how difficult it is.

But I did stop, I left hospital with a 6 week supply of patches, and continued on the 12 week course, at the end of which the patches stopped and I haven't smoked since. I won't say it was easy, but nor was it hard. All of us smokers know what damage we're doing to ourselves, but always resort to the usual story of knowing someone who smoked their whole life and died in their 80s of something unrelated to their smoking, but for each of those lucky people who didn't succumb to a smoking related disease, there is someone who did - I almost joined that latter group. I think it was waking up from the coma and lying there wondering what the hell happened! and then realising that I was in that situation due to my own behaviour, so I did all the lifestyle things I needed to, drink less, change diet, loose weight, exercise and stop smoking.

As I was told in hospital, the stent did not fix the problem, it addressed the immediate issue of the LAD being blocked, but the heart disease remains - that can't be fixed, but it can be managed, stopping smoking is part of that management.

I know you can beat this addition, The most positive of my heart event is that I have finally stopped smoking, Good luck.

Yes, you should (says someone who had a heart attack but is still smoking 3 years later).

BUT.... I'd strongly suggest not beating yourself up over it in the meantime.

If you make the other changes then, between those and your stent, your odds have improved already. Stressing over the bits you can't change yet can be harmful in itself because stress is also a driver for heart issues.

So, try to take a nice philosophical line that it happened, you're still here, and you're in a better place physically than before they put the stent in (you just didn't know it then)!

There are no life changing things you can do that will be as effective as stopping smoking - none!!

wischo profile image
wischo in reply to Heather1957

Fully agree with you.

Agreed, but failing to stop AND getting stressed over your failure is worse than failing to stop.

gilreid1 profile image
gilreid1 in reply to Heather1957

This is quote from W H O. The most important behavioural risk factors of heart disease and stroke are unhealthy diet, physical inactivity, tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol. The effects of behavioural risk factors may show up in individuals as raised blood pressure, raised blood glucose, raised blood lipids, and overweight and obesity. These “intermediate risks factors” can be measured in primary care facilities and indicate an increased risk of heart attack, stroke, heart failure and other complications.

Your statement is technically not correct?

Stopping smoking will help. But people who don’t smoke also have heart related issues.

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to gilreid1

If you say so!

gilreid1 profile image
gilreid1 in reply to Heather1957

? I don’t say so. World health organisation say so

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to gilreid1

I just can't believe that anyone on a site that is talking about heart problems would try and make out smoking isn't 'that bad', so I don't really care who said it, you posted it,

gilreid1 profile image
gilreid1 in reply to Heather1957

Maybe read posts more accurately. I did not at anytime say smoking was not bad for anyone. In fact in my reply to Jamesy I acknowledge that smoking is not good. And for the second time in a few weeks your responses are very aggressive and uncalled for

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to gilreid1

I am very forthright in my responses I won't argue with that, maybe I just say it as I see it. Oh and maybe YOU need to read posts more accurately as I never said you didn't say smoking wasn't bad for you, I actually said that you said it wasn't 'that bad'. I don't mind being called out but it should be for what I actually said not for what you think I said. I'll leave it there as I really don't like your name calling.

gilreid1 profile image
gilreid1 in reply to Heather1957

Maybe try and not shoot the messenger

I totally agree with you there!

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to Karen_2

Are you a smoker?

Karen_2 profile image
Karen_2 in reply to Heather1957

Yes and I'm trying to stop. I haven't gave up giving up. I will get there

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to Karen_2

Good luck - I hope you have some help, you don't need to do it alone.

Karen_2 profile image
Karen_2 in reply to Heather1957

Thank you. Like I said I have PTSD from heart attack all those years of ago which I feel alone with that but not stopping smoking.

I switched to vaping 10 years ago after trying patches and gum.It was easy and I still vape as I enjoy the "act" of smoking although I vape zero nicotine and pure glycol.

Try it. You won't be sorry.

Free stop smoking hack for you (and anyone else), which works for very well. I am a qualified coach and hypnotherapist and use this with my clients who want to give up bad habits.

Firstly, ask your self, and I mean really ask yourself..... "Do I want to stop smoking?" If the answer is no, then carry on and enjoy it. Your life, your choice, you are in control, no one else.

If however the answer is yes, then feel free to try this.

Time how long you take for every drag for each cigarette you smoke every day, time each one, it's very important. Write the answer down in seconds. It won't be many!

Add up how many cigarettes you smoke each day. Write the answer down.

Multiply the drag time by the number of cigarettes you smoke per day to get an answer in seconds. Write this down.

Divide the answer by 60 to get minutes. Divide again by 60, if needed, to get the answer in hours (unlikely). This is the amount of time you are a SMOKER.

Take away the answer from 24 hours.

The answer is how many hours in a day you are a NON SMOKER! You will be very very surprised!

e.g. being very generous I would approximate , 5 seconds per drag on average, 12 drags per cigarette is 60 seconds, 20 cigarettes a day, equals 1200 seconds a day which is 20 minutes!

A 20 a day habit means you are a NON SMOKER for 23 hours and 40 minutes out of 24.....let that sink in. If you do not smoke for 23 hours and 40 minutes or how many it is for you (a lot more I guess?), how easy will it be to get to 24?

Good luck and knowing you have to make some changes and you have come through this experience very well is a fantastic start. I am sure you are going to do amazingly.

Jamesy12 profile image
Jamesy12 in reply to Thecyclist

Thanks for the positive feedback,, I do limit myself to a smoke after breakfast rather than one straight after my first cup of tea of the day I feel it helps or so I think to myself,,, will keep on trying 🤞👍

Qualipop profile image
Qualipop in reply to Thecyclist

That is absolutely brilliant. I spend most of my time just holding a cigarette and wasting money

Knock them on the head. It’s hard… but you can do it. After my heart attack I asked my wife to bin all my fags, lighters and ashtrays in the house before I came home I was determined to quit. I was in hell for a few weeks but after that I focused on my health and eating and things got easier.

I had a heart attack on April 29, 2021. Quit smoking on April 29, 2021. Never smoked again and don't want to smoke again. Don't miss it at all. I live with 2 people that smoke and still don't miss it. Just quit and don't look back. I can attest to the fact that smoking does nothing positive for you, so there's nothing to miss.

I do feel for you as its very difficult to give up smoking. With other addictions there is usually an alternative that you can turn to to help but with smoking it is all or nothing.Have you visited your GP. They usually run clinics to help which may be useful.

I was 62 when I stopped (4 years ago). I was taken into hospital with AF and not released for 10 days. I went in with no money or cigarettes and decided that was the time to give up. I felt so awful with the AF that I couldn't have smoked anyway. It worked and I haven't had one since but I do miss it even now !

Good luck. It will happen when you are ready .

Hi sorry to hear of your event. Very similar to mine - out of the blue with no warning then blue lighted to hospital. Fully blocked LAD STEMI. Stent inserted. Four hours later clot in stent meant another angiogram and angioplasty. 4 weeks later unwell - RCA blocked - another stent. Since then developed micro vascular angina. I wasn’t particularly fit but ok and still teaching ( I was almost 65). I rarely drank but from age of 40 started smoking to deal with stress and help unwind. I had tried stopping but they were my crutch when depression hit. I stopped the night of the heart attack as it was so traumatic but it wasn’t easy! I didn’t use patches. Like previous post I tried one about 6 months later and hated it. I still crave them when I’m stressed. One thing that helped is I only smoked menthol and about 15 a day. You can’t get menthol so a bit easier for me. When I went on holiday I smoked about 40 over 2 weeks because it helped my relaxation - and menthol available. My husband wasn’t happy but I assured him I wouldn’t continue once home and I haven’t. I admit it was stupid but I enjoyed it! So don’t give up hope. It can be done. But I’m weak as I’ve swapped one problem for another as I’ve now put on nearly 2 stone ! Despite doing more exercise and getting a puppy which needs long walk every day. I was only just over 7 stone at time of HA so weight was not an issue then - but it is now. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Yes it’s really important to try to stop but it has to be when you decide for it to work. You’ve already made several changes - great - so you know you have the willpower. My angina problems give me the incentive not to go back to smoking - the pain and fear are reminders that I nearly died ( so they tell me when it’s the HA that must not be named 😱). Anyway sorry I’m rambling but main point is you can do it but not everyone can make all the changes at once. I managed the smoking but not the diet. I really do wish you luck

was in the same boat as you seriously try a vape i use one called "buzz bar" £5 last as long as 20 cigarettes'

an to be honest with you its not a matter of i cant give up smoking its a matter of you HAVE TO GIVE UP smoking i hope you try this it was the only thing that helped me

for me it turned out it was more the hand to mouth habit than the nicotine

having a vape solves this

regards Dave

I was a 40 to 60 fags a day bloke until, finally fed up to the back teeth with being nagged so much I decided to stop and that was 35 years ago and I am now about the most ANTI smoking person you could ever find!In the years up to my final decision to stop I had tried various over the counter fad and basically useless products, I had also tried hypnosis and acupuncture, but the only thing that stopped me was a 100% definite resolve to actually STOP SMOKING.

Like you, I am and was fit prior to my heart going AWOL 4 or so years ago and I know in my brain & heart, even before the consultants told me, my problems were/are mainly because of my former addiction to this stupid habit.

Go on Jamesy, what are you a man or a mouse? You can do it, just tell yourself you can do it and simply STOP and if you do, just think, you will be now be able to smell things, your family and friends I hope will be all supportive of your efforts with none of the sneaking a quick fag behind the back of the garden shed.

Make your house and your entire garden a totally no smoking zone, not even allowing any of your family or friends go outside for a fag, because when they come back inside they will all smell as revolting as you used to!!

Good luck, you can do it.

Good morning. Good luck with the stopping smoking. I smoked for almost 50 years - I was referred to a cardiac surgeon in April 2018 as needing an aortic valve replacement. When I received my appointment date for August 2018, I decided to stop smoking - if I'm honest I didn't want to but felt I should. With the help of patches and gum I stopped on 1st August and haven't smoked since. Was it hard - yes, and if I'm honest, I miss them every day but I know if I had just one that would be me hooked again. Good luck, it can be done, just take every hour at a time to start with x

One day working away and feeling fine and Bang ! one hour later lying on a hospital bed.

Heart Attack - one stent and a triple Bypass op.I was in the hospital for 4 weeks and that helped me to stop smoking - I was a smoker for 40 years - I am 62 years of age .

It's been 3 months 2 weeks now without a cigarette - I still feel the urge to have that cigarette - the urge comes- but it goes away.

I have that feeling every day- but it will not beat me.

I was giving another chance - so I am not going to destroy this by smoking again- don't get me wrong, I loved a smoke - being a joiner, I loved to have a smoke and a coffee during breaks and at home - now that pleasure is gone.

It's hard, as I feel like a smoke when I am writing this and I will probably feel like a smoke after my morning coffee- but I will fight this addiction - I have to .

Its always the shame eh! some thing has to happen to you before you stop smoking or your doctor tells you - you better stop now or you will die - as if this never happened to me, I would still be smoking - as I have tried about 20 times to give up - but this serious and live changing operation was what I needed - crazy eh!

So Jamesy !!! try your bloody best to give this habit up ! I know it's not easy and as Bekind28 said: we now have to do everything we can to protect our second chance.

I couldn't agree more - Good luck and welcome to the Community

Heather1957 profile image
Heather1957 in reply to Allan007

Really well done on stopping smoking. I know it is hard. I think of the times when I really used to enjoy a smoke, usually when on the phone or with a drink and for a long time I missed them (even though I went cold turkey) Every day is a triumph, well done you.

Hi.Was a smoker for 20+ years and I know exactly how hard it is to give up! About a year before my heart attack i switched from smoking to vaping. After the heart attack i switched to nicotime pouches...these give u the nicotine without all the other things that go into our lungs. Slowly weaned down to the lowest level and now using less and less.

Think positive and know you CAN do this. If you fall off the wagon (which doesnt make you a failure!) start again ,take one day at a time.

Good luck . Julie x

This ‘community’ is so supportive of all people who are trying to make changes to improve health and well being, whether their own or someone close to them. It is so reassuring to see such positive, genuine encouragement and re enforcement when these necessary changes can be so challenging especially on top of the stress of the underlying health issues.

I really hope the sympathy and sharing of personal experiences here helps you Jamesy.

You have the potential of years more healthy life ahead of you.

It is ultimately a choice, your choice.

Addiction is hard but if you want to have a chance of enjoying those years it is surely a challenge you can take on.

We will be cheering you on.

There is a quit support forum that you may find helpful.

Dear Jamesy12

You have had a warning, are you going to listen to it ?

That warning comes with a few rules for the future and these rules have been tried and tested.

One of the biggest is stop bloody smoking !

Hard yes but not as hard as watching your loved ones upset and having to cope with the consequences.

If not for yourself { which why not? } then for them and me, for I might one day meet you { unlikely} but not as unlikely if you continue smoking.

And yes at 62 ex smoker { just } I have the full right to post this and nag you like an old woman.

Take care and think hard…………..then live your new life.

As a smoker of 30 years, I stopped after getting a chest infection and being do I'll I was unable to consider having a cigarette. When I got over it, I just didn't start again. I was lucky, and still consider myself so 20 years later. There is not 'a good time' to stop smoking - that time is now. Bin those cigarettes right now and adopt a hobby or something to do to take your mind off it. I am afraid you have been 'warned' and it is up to you to give up today and heed that warning for the sake of yourself and your family. If a heart attack is not enough whatever will it take? Sorry to be harsh but I really think you need to do the right thing. Good luck, you can do it. Just start right now.

You did better than I did, I had pleurisy when I was smoking and boy was I ill, yet as soon as I could I started puffing again, I was coughing so much I swear I popped a rib. The reason I stopped was in 2003 I moved back to Wales into my own little bungalow and swore I wouldn't smoke inside and make the place smell, one evening I was standing outside the front door in my dressing gown, with a glass of wine and having a ciggie, I was FREEZING!! I thought to myself, 'what the bloody hell are you doing'!! I had been smoking for nearly 30 year (late starter) between 20 - 40 a day and I came inside, threw the rest of my cigarettes away and have never smoked again. Now I know not everyone finds it that easy but we all need a wake up call.

It was touch and go, I had been ill for a week and stood in my kitchen with my hand on a packet of cigarettes. I suddenly thought - 'I've done cold turkey'. Never touched one since, which is fantastic in hindsight. There have been reasons to start again but why waste healthy lungs. We should be proud, better late than never. I hope the o p tries to give up.

I do think I am lucky and don't really have an addictive personality (apart from chocolate!) When my brother was put into a coma after he had an exploding aorta in 2018 (he was still smoking) they put nicotine patches on him every day to stop the withdrawal (even in the coma) I shared time by his bedside with his wife and watched them clean out his lungs (from the Intubation tube) daily and the gunge that came up was vile. He has never smoked from that day to this but he does struggle with it and I am sure if he just has the one he will go back to it.

Yes, I often feel like one evrm now after 20 years but just before Christmas my brother died suddenly of a heart attack so even more reason not to fall back. It is hard, I empathize with anyone trying to give up.

So ill ... dratted predictive e text.


Sometimes it feels like advice is aimed at making you blame yourself or feel not quite strong enough to give up or not resolved enough... All that seemed to make me feel bad, blaming myself or blaming my lack of strength to give up.

That's not always helpful. I tried 4 or 5 times. I noticed talking to other smokers that everyone has their own way, giving up is as personal and unique as the habit itself. Remember It's just a habit. What worked for me was a "quit smoke group" you can get that through the NHS. I found it really helpful to be part of group of people doing the same thing.

I still temember the characters in our group, It didn't work for me first time but it did work.

That was about 20 years ago, it didn't stop me having open heart surgery! I had my surgery last August ... it's just easier on your lungs as you get older it's much better for good health in later life to give up smoking.

All the best

Tim Smith

Thanks for sharing mate reading through made me feel I’m not the only one with who is trying to quite , will get there in the end .



JamesyIt is incredible that some ex-smokers show the least sympathy. I am an ex smoker and you have my sympathy 100%. Here’s my story not dissimilar to your own. April 2019 decide to give up smoking after nearly forty years smoking small cigars after noticing my energy levels where dropping and pains in my legs after exercise (playing golf). Used a vape for six weeks then stopped completely. August same year blue lighted to A&E with heart attack emergency stent fitted to one completely blocked artery. During the procedure it was noted that several other areas where blocked but in areas that where deemed dangerous or not possible to stent. Was admitted to the ward kept for two weeks they were convinced I would have another heart attack. It was then decided I would require a bypass procedure. Eighth weeks later I underwent a triple bypass surgery.

The point is that not at anytime did the consultants mention about my previous smoking habits. I had mentioned to them about my smoking but their attitude was the damage has been done by whatever means let’s concentrate on getting it fixed.

To help you with your decision on smoking, here is where I noticed the main difference. I was told that not smoking would help and speed up my recovery. This was very clear during my rehab course. The smokers where clearly behind the non smokers even their skin tone (ashen) and all had lower oxygen levels. That’s when I knew I had made the right decision to stop.

Now the hard part. Three years since I stopped and I cannot lie I miss smoking and on low days I fight hard to resist so it’s not easy and I really have sympathy for anyone trying to stop. To help you if you have any friends similar age who don’t smoke have a look at them and judge their overall health compared to your own. I am now 64 and the change for me has been dramatically better especially with my energy

Good luck on your journey whatever you decide


Hi Jamesy. I carried on smoking for 3 months after my heart attack (resulting, at that point, in 1 stent and 1 ICD). I then realised that I needed to give up, so I got to the end of pack and didn't buy another. That was over 3 years ago. I do miss it occasionally- I was driving home yesterday after a weekend away, and thought "a cig would go down very well just now" - but I've never seriously thought of having another. Good luck xx

The route that's got the best success rate, and by a country mile, is firstly transferring your cigarette addiction to a nicotine substitute, such as patches, lozenges, or vaping. And once that's done you then get rid of the substitute. In other words a two step process.

But at the end of the day no method is guaranteed. It's your choice, and you'll either quit or you won't. I don't think anyone here can influence the outcome, all we can do is wish you good luck!

I reacted exactly the same as you after my heart attack. It took about 3 days for it to sink in. Thankfully it w as mild and the damage minor and like you a smoker since I was 21 ( now 73). I had visits from the stop smoking nurse from the GP practice and I got down to one a day. I'd have a puff then cut the end off after meals. However I am housebound and in constant severe pain and the lockdowns, not even having anyone to take me out has meant just sitting bored stiff and I started smoking again and it even increased from before. It really is a battle. You need to find out exactly why you have the habit. Is it just something to do with your hands,t he hand to mouth action? Is it the taste ( they really are foul), is it certain times of day? Then try to find something that prevents the habit. With me it's the hand to mouth. You need something too force you to stop. You don't smell it in your own house or on your clothes but I got a cleaner who refused to come because her clothes smelled after she'd been. That really hit me and I'm ashamed of the way the house smells. That's actually more help in stopping than the heart attack was. Criticism is counter productive. It's an uphill battle. Best of luck. There's no easy answer.

I have found the perfect way to give up the dreaded weed.Have a bypass.Had mine 4 years ago come April and haven't touched one since.Good luck

Glad to hear all ok now. It's been 12 years since my heart attack and now I suffer with PTSD. I do my pulse alot if I get new pain. The only advice I can give you is stop smoking your way by cutting down, by just cutting the odd one out every week you will get there in your time. Or just stop it's YOUR choice. Good luck 😀

Sounds like it was quite a shock! Think we’ve all reacted the same way at some point!

Of every single factor that contributes to someone having a heart attack, smoking is the one that contributes 100% every time. So, unfortunately for you, you’re going to have to stop smoking as soon as possible. It’s a big ask, I know - I’d struggled a few times trying to quit over my 26-year stint, but what finally made the penny drop was realising that if I didn’t stop for good this time, it WAS actually going to kill me. And I figured I rather enjoy being alive a lot more than being able to smoke.

Have a look at the NHS website. They have a lot of free advice and options to help you quit.

Hi Jamesy12.

I've smoked twenty-a-day for seventy years, so here's my two-pennorth.

Don't be afraid of the phrase 'cold turkey', it's not as drastic as it sounds.

Don't immediately resolve to quit; it makes too 'big a thing' of it, and keep it to yourself - you don't want to be pressured to give progress reports to all your friends and family

One random morning, preferable following a heavy night of indulgence or just feeling under the weather, just delay that first morning smoke for a while; substitute this with a few deep breaths of air.

Now you will have a small sense of achievement, encouraging you to go on and delay the next smoke. If someone offers you one, just lie; say 'Not just now, I've only just put one out'.

Soon you will find you have gone for a whole morning, and the world hasn't ended.

Repeat the formula for the afternoon, then evening, and voila! You've been a non-smoker for a whole day. Be proud, and don't forget those drags of clean breaths.

Shame to waste that success on the following day now you know how simple it was, so let's just aim to double the score by a repeat performance. Now you've become a non-smoker for two whole days, and the third day will come easier still. You're substituting pride for the the nicotine hit. Eventually you will lose count of the days.

Before long you'll be counting the weeks, months and years of being a non-smoker.

But be warned! You are still a smoker - permanently. Nothing will change that, so don't be tempted to celebrate with a cigarette. Ever! You will always be only one smoke away from being a habitual smoker.

I've done this routine several times in my life; a month, six months, a year and even three years, but on every occasion fell after the first cigarette. That last time was when I was playing Charles Condamine in an amateur stage production of Blythe Spirit. The character smoked a lot, and I felt I needed to give a faithful performance, so needed the practice.

Bang! After that I was back on twenty-a-day.

I don't know if this is allowed but I have started a free Facebook group for hearties that want to quit smoking but haven't made it yet. It's something new and I created it as it is hard to admit that you still smoke even after being told not to and experiencing a cardiac event. It is not to encourage each other to smoke but it is a safe place where people can go for support and motivation. I hope to be able to drop some tips and advice into group and slowly but surely people will get to the tipping point and decide to stop once and for all.

Pop over to Facebook and you can find out more by reading the description. I am happy to answer any questions.

Hi Jamesy12 I give up smoking and drinking round about the age of 40 , what trigged it for me was me and my wife had another baby girl 15 year after the first . some one was looking down on us , 24 years on its been great ,Still don't drink and smoke . If you drink coffee try stopping that as well , drinking alcohol and coffee to me was a trigger , I sat round the table in pub smoking one after one , some of my mates have gone now because of the booze and fags . I get out every day on my MTB not electric am 66 this year Still time to have some fun good look .

Hi Jamesy,Welcome to the forum.

I haven't had a heart attack, but collapsed and discovered I have an arrhythmia which has been treated with a pacemaker. The cardiologist told me that the most likely cause was smoking. I had smoked about 20 a day for nearly 50 years.

I also have COPD, and needed to stop urgently, so I just went cold turkey and haven't smoked for nearly two and a half years now. It wasn't easy at all, but I have had the support and encouragement of my wife and friends, and took it one day at a time.

If you want to stop, you can do it, but the most important thing is not to beat yourself up if you don't manage it straight away - just keep on trying. I wish you all the best.

Hi Jamesy12. I’m just going to say welcome to the forum, it will take you time to process what has happened, and good luck. Take it easy. Chris

Wish it was easy to stop and none of us would have been long time smokers. It’s an addiction … as simple as that. Addiction. I had my heart attack ( sounds like a badge of honour ???) August 2020 and was in no position to think about cigs. I just wanted the pain to stop. Never known pain like it. They couldn’t stent me as I’m allergic to the contrast dye used in putting the stent in the right place. I’ve no idea how long I was in icu but I do remember asking one of the many doctors around the bed fighting to keep here that if they couldn’t stop the pain to let me go it was that bad. Anyway…. Stopping smoking was not a problem to me. I got that second chance thanks to that team of doctors and quite honestly I was and am far too scared to undo their hard work. Dig deep to find that determination that we all have and you will not look back. I wish you the strength to succeed 🌹

Oh and a PS - to make you smile …. I also can no longer eat milk chocolate which is such a pain … my taste buds have improved so much I can taste the additives in milk chocolate …. How lucky am I ??????

The addictive nature of cigarettes is very easy to overcome and the nicotine will be gone within 48 hours. The habit is the issue and will disappear between 7 to 30ish days of doing something else in its place!Tell the cancer stick to shove it ‘you know where’ 🤭 Be strong dude🤗

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