Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Smoking Kills




Health Risks of Smoking

Smoking is one of the main causes of serious health diseases, such as cancer, stroke and heart problems. If you have no plans of quitting today, having knowledge of the different types of illnesses that you may experience through years of smoking may change your perception and lead you to stop smoking.
In this section, you will discover how smoking affects various parts of the body including the eyes, nose, throat, lungs, heart, skin, blood, etc. Here are some possible health effects of smoking:
• Lung Cancer
• Heart Diseases
• High Blood Pressure
• Bad Breath
• Gum Disease
• Depression
• Snoring
• Diabetes
• Infertility on men and women
• Thyroid Disease
• Harmful effects on Bones and Joints












Nicotine addiction

Tobacco contains the chemical nicotine. Smoking cigarettes can lead to nicotine addiction.The addiction begins when nicotine acts on nicotinic acetylcholine receptors to release neurotransmitters such as dopamineglutamate, and gamma-aminobutyric acid. Cessation of smoking leads to symptoms of nicotine withdrawal such as anxiety and irritability. Methods of smoking cessation must address nicotine addiction and nicotine withdrawal symptoms.








Cold turkey

"Cold turkey" is abrupt cessation of all nicotine use. In three studies, it was the quitting method used by 76%, 85%, or 88% of long-term successful quitters. In a large British study of ex-smokers in the 1980s, before the advent of pharmacotherapy, 53% of the ex-smokers said that it was “not at all difficult” to stop, 27% said it was “fairly difficult”, and the remainder found it very difficult







Cost

The prospect of better health is a major reason for quitting, but there are other reasons, too.
Smoking is expensive. It isn’t hard to figure out how much you spend on smoking: multiply how much money you spend on tobacco every day by 365 (days per year). The amount may surprise you. Now multiply that by the number of years you have been using tobacco and that amount will probably shock you.
Multiply the cost per year by 10 (for the next 10 years) and ask yourself what you would rather do with that much money.
And this doesn’t include other possible costs, such as higher costs for health and life insurance, and likely health care costs due to tobacco-related problems.









Once You Start, It's Hard to Stop
Smoking is a hard habit to break because tobacco contains nicotine, which is highly addictive. Like heroin or other addictive drugs, the body and mind quickly become so used to the nicotine in cigarettes that a person needs to have it just to feel normal.
People start smoking for a variety of different reasons. Some think it looks cool. Others start because their family members or friends smoke. Statistics show that about 9 out of 10 tobacco users start before they're 18 years old. Most adults who started smoking in their teens never expected to become addicted. That's why people say it's just so much easier to not start smoking at all.























Smoking Effects on the Human Body

  • Toxic ingredients in cigarette smoke travel throughout the body, causing damage in several different ways.
  • Nicotine reaches the brain within 10 seconds after smoke is inhaled. It has been found in every part of the body and in breast milk.
  • Carbon monoxide binds to hemoglobin in red blood cells, preventing affected cells from carrying a full load of oxygen.
  • Cancer-causing agents (carcinogens) in tobacco smoke damage important genes that control the growth of cells, causing them to grow abnormally or to reproduce too rapidly.
  • The carcinogen benzo(a)pyrene binds to cells in the airways and major organs of smokers.
  • Smoking affects the function of the immune system and may increase the risk for respiratory and other infections.
  • There are several likely ways that cigarette smoke does its damage. One is oxidative stress that mutates DNA, promotes atherosclerosis, and leads to chronic lung injury. Oxidative stress is thought to be the general mechanism behind the aging process, contributing to the development of cancer, cardiovascular disease, and COPD.
  • The body produces antioxidants to help repair damaged cells. Smokers have lower levels of antioxidants in their blood than do nonsmokers.
  • Smoking is associated with higher levels of chronic inflammation, another damaging process that may result in oxidative stress.




















Health benefits

Many of tobacco's health effects can be minimized through smoking cessation. The health benefits over time of stopping smoking include
  • Within 20 minutes after quitting, blood pressure and heart rate decrease
  • Within 12 hours, carbon monoxide levels in the blood decrease to normal
  • Within 48 hours, nerve endings and sense of smell and taste both start recovering
  • Within 3 months, circulation and lung function improve
  • Within 9 months, there are decreases in cough and shortness of breath
  • Within 1 year, the risk of coronary heart disease is cut in half
  • Within 5 years, the risk of stroke falls to the same as a non-smoker, and the risks of many cancers (mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, cervix) decrease significantly
  • Within 10 years, the risk of dying from lung cancer is cut in half, and the risks of larynx and pancreas cancers decrease
  • Within 15 years, the risk of coronary heart disease drops to the level of a non-smoker
















Secondhand Smoke 

Secondhand smoke (also called environmental tobacco smoke, involuntary smoke, and passive smoke) is the combination of “sidestream” smoke (the smoke given off by a burning tobacco product) and “mainstream” smoke (the smoke exhaled by a smoker) 
People can be exposed to secondhand smoke in homes, cars, the workplace, and public places, such as bars, restaurants, and recreational settings. In the United States, the source of most secondhand smoke is from cigarettes, followed by pipes, cigars, and other tobacco products 
The amount of smoke created by a tobacco product depends on the amount of tobacco available for burning. The amount of secondhand smoke emitted by smoking one large cigar is similar to that emitted by smoking an entire pack of cigarettes. 














Pregnant women

Smoking during pregnancy can cause adverse health effects in both the woman and the foetus. The 2008 Guideline determined that "person-to-person psychosocial interventions" (typically including "intensive counseling") increased abstinence rates in pregnant women who smoke to 13.3%, compared with 7.6% in usual care.








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Questions to ask yourself

To successfully detach from smoking, you will need to identify and address your smoking habits, the true nature of your dependency, and the techniques that work for you. These types of questions can help:
  • Do you feel the need to smoke at every meal?
  • Are you more of a social smoker?
  • Is it a very bad addiction (more than a pack a day)? Or would a simple nicotine patch do the job?
  • Is your cigarette smoking linked to other addictions, such as alcohol or gambling?
  • Are you open to hypnotherapy and/or acupuncture?
  • Are you someone who is open to talking about your addiction with a therapist or counselor?
  • Are you interested in getting into a fitness program?
Take the time to think of what kind of smoker you are, which moments of your life call for a cigarette, and why. This will help you to identify which tips, techniques or therapies may be most beneficial for you.    






Start your stop smoking plan with START


S = Set a quit date.
T = Tell family, friends, and co-workers that you plan to quit.
A = Anticipate and plan for the challenges you'll face while quitting.
R = Remove cigarettes and other tobacco products from your home, car, and work.
T = Talk to your doctor about getting help to quit.




1 comment:

Phillip Edward said...

Yea, I agree you. I finally switched to e-cigs. No tobacco, no tar, no smoke. It is widely known that tobacco-based cigarettes contain around 4 000 harmful chemicals including arsenic, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide and carbon monoxide. About 50 of these chemicals are thought to be carcinogenic. E cigarettes do not contain tobacco or tar and produce no smoke! I'm enjoining so much!


Nicotinefree cigarettes