People who smoke cigarettes and those who are constantly exposed to second hand smoke are at a very high risk of suffering from many serious health issues. Smoking is one of the most dangerous and fatal addictions. It is not at all easy to get rid of the habit of smoking cigarettes. Tobacco contains cyanide, nicotine and other chemicals that are very harmful for the human body. Inhaling high doses of these chemicals can prove to be life-threatening. One of the main problems with smoking is that although most smokers know that they are risking their lives but still they just can’t seem to get rid of this addiction. This is because nicotine present in cigarettes is as addictive as cocaine and heroin. Explained below are some of the most dangerous health problems that smoking cigarettes can cause.
Various types of Cancer
Smoking increases your risk of suffering from various kinds of cancers such as lungs, bladder, stomach, and throat cancer. In fact, more than seventy five percent of all lung cancers and about thirty percent of all cancers are a result of smoking. The sticky substance tar in the smoke of tobacco is the main reason for lung cancer. Smoking cigarettes, over a period of time, makes a person ten times more likely to be affected by lung cancer.
Stroke and Heart Problems
The combination of carbon monoxide and nicotine in cigarette smoke results in a temporary rise in the heart rate every time you smoke. This exerts increased amount of pressure on the blood vessels and the heart. The harmful substances in cigarettes are also one of the main causes of arteriosclerosis, which a condition characterized by fat deposition in the blood vessels. When arteries become narrow, the blood circulation gets impaired and the risk of stroke and heart attack increases. Impaired blood circulation in the body can also result in paralysis of the feet and hands. Out of the total death caused by heart diseases, almost thirty percent are a result of smoking.
Peptic Ulcer and Heartburn
Smoking adversely affects the functioning of your digestive system. This leads to the development of digestive problems like heartburn and peptic ulcer. Smoking cigarettes causes weakening of the lower esophageal sphincter, thereby promoting the entry of natural acidic juices of the stomach into the esophagus. When this happens, the result is heartburn. Smoking can cause infection to the lining of the stomach and also increase stomach acid secretion. This significantly increases the risk of peptic ulcer in smokers.
One of the main reasons responsible of causing emphysema is excessive smoking. In fact, more than seventy five percent of all emphysema problems are caused due to smoking. This chronic health condition is a result of damage in the walls of the alveoli inside the lungs. Excessive smoking increases the production of harmful substances that go on to reduce the elasticity of air sacs that are present inside the lungs. This causes a significant decline in the effectiveness of the lungs to take in oxygen and exhale the carbon dioxide.
In addition to the most common and life threatening health problems explained above, smoking reduces the strength of your immune system and makes you vulnerable to various illnesses. It also causes bad breathe, yellowing of teeth, and skin damage. Smokers are also more susceptible to be affected by respiratory problems such as pneumonia, bronchitis and more. The only way to prevent the above mentioned smoking-induced problems is to quit smoking.
Risk Factors Associated With Smoking
Smoking cigarettes or being exposed to second smoke can lead to some of the most dangerous health problems. There are a variety of reasons why people start smoking cigarettes. Some find it comforting, while others believe that it makes them look cool. The main problem with smoking is that it is very easy to get addicted to and once you start smoking, it tends to become a daily habit.
Tobacco contains some very harmful chemicals like nicotine and cyanide. These chemicals, when inhaled in higher doses, can prove to be fatal. Nicotine is an alkaloid that is used in a number of medicines and insecticides. Although most people who smoke are aware of how dangerous and life-threatening this habit is, they just can’t quit. The main reason for this is that like heroin, nicotine too is highly addictive. Some of the most dangerous effects that smoking has on the human body are explained below.
Heart Disease and Stroke
Due to the mixture of nicotine and carbon monoxide that is present in cigarette smoke, smoking causes a temporary increase in the heart rate every single time. This strains the heart as well as the blood vessels, thereby resulting in high blood pressure. The chemicals present in cigarettes also cause the deposition of fat in blood vessels, causing them to become narrow. This obstructs circulation and increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Reduced supply of blood and oxygen is also known to cause paralysis of hands and feet. The fact that approximately 30% of all deaths caused by heart disease are because of smoking shows how dangerous this addiction is for your heart.
Smoking cigarettes can cause different types of cancers including lung, throat, bladder, and stomach cancer. Approximately 30% of all cancer cases and more than 80% of all lung cancers are caused because of smoking. The tar, which is a sticky substance present in tobacco smoke, is responsible for causing lung cancer. People who smoke cigarettes are ten times more likely to suffer from lung cancer than people who don’t smoke.
Smoking cigarettes is among the major causes of emphysema. Emphysema is a chronic health problem that happens because of the damage caused to the walls of the alveoli in the lungs. Smoking causes an increase in the production of those substances that are responsible for reducing the elasticity of the air sacs inside your lungs. As a result of this, there is a fall in the ability of your lungs to inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. More than 80% of all emphysema cases are caused due to smoking.
Heartburn and Peptic Ulcer
Since smoking has a negative effect on the entire digestive system of the body, it leads to heartburn and peptic ulcer. It allows the natural acidic juices of the stomach to enter esophagus by causing the lower esophageal sphincter to become weak. This eventually results in heartburn. Smoking increases the risk of infection of the lining of the stomach and also causes increased secretion of stomach acid. This is the main reason why peptic ulcer is far more common among smokers.
Besides increasing the risk of severe health problems explained above, smoking cigarettes weakens the body’s immune system, harms the skin, leads to bad breath, and causes yellowing of teeth. People who some are more vulnerable to respiratory disease like bronchitis, pneumonia, etc. Hence, avoiding smoking is a must for healthy living.