6 Health Risks Of Smoking Cigarettes To Give You a Wake Up Call
Smoking cigarettes is a dangerous habit.
We have heard it, read it and learned it our entire lives. We know smoking causes health problems that, in some cases, can lead to death. But, some of us still smoke. According to the World Health Organization, five million deaths are reported every year due to the direct use of tobacco.
Because, we never properly research and educate ourselves to find out how smoking affects our system. We rarely read about the life threatening diseases caused by smoking.
Simply put, we never stop to think that we could be one of the people adversely affected by smoking. So here is a list of 6 potential health risks of smoking that will make you rethink your decision:
Smoking can cause cancer in any part of the human body. It has been linked to lung, liver and collateral cancer due to the use of tobacco. Even though breast cancer and prostate cancer have also been linked to smoking, the claim has not been proven yet. Additionally, cancer patients are advised to quit smoking so that their odds of surviving can be improved. Therefore, a person who smokes cigarettes has an increased risk of developing cancer than a person who does not smoke.
Smoking can also increase the risk of mouth, throat, larynx, and esophagus cancer. The National Cancer Institute has reported that, if a person quits smoking by the age of 40, he/she reduces their chance of dying by smoking-related diseases by about 90 percent.
2. Cardiovascular Disease
Stroke and heart diseases are also potential health risks caused by smoking. According to UAE medical experts, one in two deaths are caused by cardiovascular diseases, and one of their leading causes include smoking.
Smoking cigarettes can damage blood vessels, increase blood pressure, and damage the muscle of the heart. A study from Rashid Hospital in UAE stated that in the year 2013, 50% of the patients of heart attacks were smokers.
It is to be noted that non-smokers, in the presence of cigarette smoke, can also develop cardiovascular diseases because breathing secondhand smoke is dangerous for the heart.
3. Integumentary and Digestive System
According to Dr. Minal Patwardhan, a UAE-based dermatologist, smoking causes premature ageing and wrinkling of the skin. It also negatively affects the healing of a wound.
Tobacco use is also a cause of inflamed and infected gums which results in tooth decay, tooth loss and bad breath. Smoking also effects insulin levels and can increase a person’s chances of developing type 2 diabetes. It is also known to create a decline in the appetite which leads to deficiency of nutrients in the body.
4. Pulmonary and Respiratory Disease
When cigarette smoke is inhaled, it directly affects the lungs due to the poisonous chemicals present in a cigarette. The lungs are damaged and they fail to filter these chemicals, thus, entrapping them.
The result is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) which consists of Emphysema and Chronic Bronchitis and affects 50% of lifelong smokers. These diseases restrict breathing and produces shortness of breath by slowly damaging air sacs and swelling the lining of the tubes of the lung.
It is also proved that children, whose parents smoke, have a higher risk of developing pneumonia, bronchitis and asthma attacks.
5. Reproductive System
Smokers have more difficulty in conceiving. According to a fertility awareness survey in the UAE, half of the people did not know that smoking affects 48% of fertility in both males and females.
Smoking is particularly risky for pregnant women. The complications range from miscarriages to premature delivery. A fetus of a pregnant woman who smokes has a higher chance of developing problems such as increased heart rate, low birth weight or respiratory illness.
Moreover, mothers who smoke can give birth to children with birth defects such as Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
6. Other Chronic Diseases
Nicotine directly affects the central nervous system which makes a person feel energized. Once the effect leaves the body, he/she feels tired and thus consumes more nicotine. Smoking is known to increase the risk of Macular degeneration and poor eyesight.
Other smoking diseases include Crohn’s disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and cataracts.
If this information has convinced you to quit smoking, then head over to the next article: 10 Methods People Use To Quit Smoking And Number 1 Will Shock You! – Part One