One thing that almost everyone across the globe knows and understands about smoking, is that it causes lung cancer. However, many people are still unaware of the fact that smoking can induce several other health complications such as heart disease, stroke, and several chronic diseases. Additionally, smoking cigarettes twofold your chances of getting cancer of the mouth, throat, bladder, cervix, kidneys, and pancreas. And while this deadly list sufficient alone for people to quit smoking and live a healthy lifestyle, they just couldn’t get past their cravings for smoking. This list focuses on the harmful effects that nicotine and tobacco products have on a healthy body and mind.
When a person inhales smoke produced by the cigarette, the nicotine in the smoke gets absorbed into the bloodstream and starts affecting the brain within just ten seconds. Once it makes its easy way to the brain, nicotine triggers numerous chemical reactions that make the smoker feel pleasure and relaxed. However, these temptations are short-lived and fade within just 2-3 minutes. Thus, smokers sometimes can end up smoking 2-3 cigarettes in one sitting just to keep getting high.
Also, the smoke contains carbon monoxide, which is a very harmful gas for our lungs. Once it reaches the bloodstream, it reduces the amount of oxygen in the blood and also increases the cholesterol deposited into the inner lining of the arteries. This high amount of cholesterol can cause arteries to harden over time, leading to strokes and even heart attacks.
Nicotine is also a highly addictive substance that can shoot up blood pressure, heart rate, and promotes the narrowing of the arteries. The substance can stay inside your body for over six to seven hours, depending upon how frequently you smoke. Also, like other addictive substances, nicotine to have certain side effects in terms of withdrawal symptoms.
E-cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products
Many teenagers and young adults believe that the newest tech in the market by the name of e-cigarettes is actually good and safer than traditional cigarettes. However, e-cigarettes are more dangerous than their conventional alternatives, as they contain higher quantities of nicotine. Several companies also brand their e-cigarettes in a way that makes people think that it is safer to consume these. But, it is not true.
There are also products by the name of JUUL, which can be severely dangerous for one’s health. Juuling not only directly attacks our lungs, but can also result in inducing poisonous substances into the body of a healthy individual. Juuls contain a liquid that is made from several harmful chemicals, which are even more deteriorating than nicotine. When someone inhales smoke produced by this liquid, they are intaking a culmination of poisonous gases that contains extracts from various unknown and harmful chemicals.
Why Are Cigarettes So Harmful?
One horrific fact is that cigarette smoke can contain 5,000 chemical compounds, and almost a ton of those are harmful to humans. This is stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention by observing that cigarette smoke contains 1,3-Butadiene which is a chemical that is used in the manufacturing of rubber. The substance is known to have carcinogens, which are chemicals that can cause blood cancer.
The smoke also contains arsenic, a compound that is used to preserve the wood. The chemical is found to be directly linked to cancer of the liver, skin, lung, and bladder. Also, ever heard of cadmium? It is a metal that is used in batteries. Yes, this compound is also observed in the smoke produced by cigarettes. This metal and its compounds have been known to cause lung, kidney, and prostate cancer. Still, think smoking is good? Also, there’s more.
You would be surprised to know that cigarette smoke is also known to contain benzene and formaldehyde, which are chemicals that are used to manufacture other chemicals and resins. This can cause leukemia and respiratory tissue cancer in humans. Chromium VI is used to make paint, dyes, and alloy metals. Their compounds cause lung cancer and are also associated with cancer of the nose.
Also, you must be well acquainted with the fact that cigarette smoke contains tar. What exactly is a tar, though? It is not a single chemical but is a combination of several compounds that are present in the smoke produced by tobacco. Tar leaves a sticky, brownish residue in your lungs, teeth, and even in the fingernails of frequent smokers.
We have always heard the term secondhand smoke in association with smoking. What exactly is this, though? Secondhand smoke refers to the smoke that is exhaled by the smokers and is inhaled unknowingly by those around them. This is a serious health hazard for many people who do not smoke, are allergic to nicotine, pregnant woman, small children, and those with existing diseases. The smoke exhaled by the smokers contains all the harmful chemicals as mentioned above, and they are the equivalent of smoking a cigarette.
Nonsmokers and people with a preexisting health condition such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol fall on the more risky side of secondhand smoke, as it causes thousands of heart and lung cancer-related deaths each year. Various studies reveal that the risk of developing heart disease increases by 25-30 percent among people who are exposed to secondhand smoke at the workplace or home.
Why You Must Quit Today
There are several reasons why you should quit smoking. However, the primary and obvious reason is that it can gift you several health problems, many of which can lead to your sudden and premature demise. This, we don’t think any of us wants. Listed below are some facts about smoking that are enough to tell why you must quit immediately.
- It is the most preventable cause of death in the United States.
- Smoking contributes to 90 percent of lung cancer-related deaths in the United States.
- Smoking and secondhand smoke contribute to almost one-third of deaths caused by coronary heart disease.
- Though smoking rates are going down, teenagers and young adults are continuing to misuse e-cigarettes, vapes, and other tobacco products.
- Smokers die ten years earlier than nonsmokers.
Quitting is hard but it is definitely not impossible. It depends on the choices you make to sustain your health and make sure your life ahead is healthy and not deteriorating continuously. However, if you need some motivation, other than the one that you are saving yourself from dying, note that millions of people successfully quit smoking every year. You can join them too.
Talk to Someone Who’s Been There. Talk to Someone Who Can Help. Scottsdale Recovery Center holds the highest accreditation (Joint Commission) and is Arizona’s premier rehab facility since 2007. Call 602-346-9142.