Within 20 minutes of the last cigarette:
· Blood pressure drops to normal
· Pulse rate drops to normal
· Body temperature of hands and feet increases to normal
· Carbon Monoxide level in blood drops to normal
· Oxygen level in blood increases to normal
· Chances of a heart attack decreases
· Nerve endings start to re-grow
· Bronchial tubes relax, making breathing easier
· Lung capacity increases
2 Weeks to 3 Months:
· Circulation improves. Walking becomes easier
· Lung function increases up to 30%
1 to 9 Months:
· Coughing, sinus congestion, fatigue, shortness of breath is decreased
· Cilia re-grows in lungs, increasing ability to handle mucous, clean the lungs, reduce infection
· Body’s overall energy level increases
· Lung cancer death rate for average smoker (one pack a day) decreases from 137 per 100,000 people to 72 per 100,000
· Lung cancer death rate for average smoker drops to 12 deaths per 100,000. Almost the rate of non-smokers
· Pre-cancerous cells are replaced with healthy cells
· Other cancers – such as those of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, bladder, kidney and pancreas decreases. (There are 30 chemicals in tobacco smoke that cause cancer.)
Is There a Safe Way to Smoke?
All cigarettes can cause damage to the human body and even a small amount is dangerous. Cigarettes are perhaps the only legal product whose advertised and intended use is harmful to the body and is PROVEN to cause cancer. Smoking fewer cigarettes is not the solution. Nether is switching from a high tar and nicotine cigarette to one with a low tar and nicotine content. When people switch to a lower tar and nicotine brand, they often smoke more to get the same nicotine dose as before.
Is Cigarette Smoking Addictive?
The nicotine in cigarette smoke is what causes an addiction to smoking. Nicotine is a drug that is addicting, just like heroin and cocaine. When taken in small amounts, it produces pleasurable
feelings that make the smoker want to smoke more. Smokers usually become dependant on nicotine and suffer both physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms when they stop smoking. These symptoms include nervousness, headaches, irritability and sleeplessness. Nicotine affects the chemistry in the brain and the central nervous system. It can also affect the mood and temperament of the smoker.
Who Can Become Addicted?
Anyone who starts is at the risk of becoming addicted to nicotine. Studies show that among addictive behavior, cigarette smoking is most likely to become an established habit during adolescence.
What Does Nicotine Do?
Nicotine is a poison and taken in large doses could kill a person by paralyzing breathing muscles. Smokers usually take it in small amounts that the body can quickly break down and get rid of, which is why the nicotine does not kill instantly. The first does of nicotine causes a person to feel awake and alert, while later doses result in a calm relaxed feeling. Nicotine can make new smokers, and regular smokers who get too much of it feel dizzy or nauseous. It also lowers skin temperature and reduces blood flow in the legs and feet. Evidence shows that nicotine plays an important role in increasing smokers’ risk of heart disease and stroke.
Does Smoking Cause Cancer?
Tobacco smoke contains at least 43 carcinogenic substances. Tobacco use accounts for 30% of all cancer deaths in the United States. Smoking is responsible for 90% of lung cancers among men and 70% among women. Cancer of the mouth, larynx, esophagus, kidney, bladder, pancreas, and uterine cervix also have in common cigarette smoking as a major cause.
How Does it Affect the Lungs?
All cigarette smokers have a lower level of proper lung function than do the non-smokers. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema kills about 81,000 people each year. Cigarette smoking is responsible for more than 65,000 of
What is Harmful in Cigarette Smoke?
Cigarette smoke is a complex mixture of organic and inorganic compounds generated by the combustion (burning) of tobacco and additives. Cigarette smoke contains tar, which is made up of over 4,000 chemicals. Some of the chemicals that can be found in cigarette smoke are cyanide, benzene, formaldehyde, menthol (wood alcohol), acetylene (the fuel used in welding torches), and ammonia. It also contains poisonous gases nitrogen oxide and carbon monoxide.
What if You Don’t Inhale?
Wherever smoke touches living cells, it does harm. Even if you don’t inhale, including pipe and cigar smokers you run the risk for lip, mouth and tongue cancer.
How Does Smoking Affect the Heart?
180,000 Americans die each year from cardiovascular disease caused by smoking. Also, of smokers and non-smokers who have had a heart attack, smokers are more likely to have another.
How Does Smoking Affect Pregnant Women?
Babies of smoking women average 6 ounces less at birth. When a pregnant woman smokes, the nicotine, carbon monoxide and other dangerous chemicals enter the bloodstream and pass directly into the baby’s body. Statistics show a direct relation between smoking during pregnancy and spontaneous abortion, stillbirths, death among newborns and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). SIDS triples for babies of mothers who smoke during pregnancy.
Why Do People Begin to Smoke?
Most people begin smoking between the ages of 10 and 18. Peer pressure and curiosity are the major influence that encourages them to experiment with smoking. Also, people with parents who smoke are more likely to begin smoking than those who have nonsmoking parents. Those who begin to smoke at a younger age are more likely than late starters to develop long-term nicotine addiction.
Another prevalent influence in our society is the tobacco industry’s advertisements for its products. They spend nearly $6 billion annually to develop and market ads that depict smoking as an exciting, glamorous, healthy adult activity.
What Are the Dangers of Second Hand Smoke?
ETS (environmental tobacco smoke) also known as passive smoking, occurs when nonsmokers inhale the tobacco smoke of others. ETS can cause lung cancer in healthy nonsmokers. A nonsmoker who is married to a smoker has a 30% greater risk of developing lung cancer than a nonsmoker living with a nonsmoker. Children whose parents smoke are more likely to suffer from pneumonia or bronchitis in the first two years of life than children who live in a smoke free household. ETS can also affect nonsmokers by causing eye irritation, headaches, nausea and dizziness.
How Does Tobacco Use Affect the Economy?
The tobacco industry is one of the most profitable businesses in the country. In 1991 tobacco manufacturers’ revenue was $32 billion. Health care costs caused directly by smoking total more than $50 billion each year. Lost productivity caused by smoking costs the US economy more than $50 billion each year. This totals more than $100 billion lost each year to health care costs and lost productivity due to smoking.
Are Chewing Tobacco and Snuff Safe Alternatives?
Smokeless tobacco contains nicotine, the same addictive drug found in cigarettes. Snuff dippers consume 10 times the amount of cancer-causing substances (nitrosamines) than cigarette smokers. Some brands contain as much as 20,000 times the legal limit of nitrosamines permitted in certain foods. The juice from smokeless tobacco is absorbed directly through the lining of the mouth. This creates sores that often lead to cancer of the mouth. Smokeless tobacco users greatly increase their risk of other cancers including gum, pharynx, larynx, and esophagus. It also causes chronic bad breath, discoloration of teeth, gum disease and tooth loss.
What Are The Chances That Smoking Will Kill You?
3 million people die worldwide each year as a result of smoking. In the United States, tobacco use is responsible for nearly one in five deaths, killing more than 400,000 Americans each year. This is more than the number of people who would die every year if three jumbo jets crashed each day with no survivors. Smoking is the single most preventable cause of death in our society.
Physician’s First Watch for October 14, 2008
David G. Fairchild, MD, MPH, Editor-in-Chief
Smoking in Middle Age Confers Poor Quality of Life Years Later
In-Hospital Smoking Cessation Interventions Must Be “Integrated and Sustained”
Smoking in Middle Age Confers Poor Quality of Life Years Later
Men who smoke in midlife face reduced health-related quality of life in older age, reports Archives of Internal Medicine.
Some 1650 healthy Finnish men reported on their smoking status at roughly 48 years of age and then were followed up 26 years later. About one-fifth died during that time. Those who’d never smoked lived about 10 years longer than those who’d reported smoking more than a pack a day.
Among survivors, never-smokers scored significantly better than heavy smokers on most quality-of-life measures, including physical functioning and bodily pain. Smoking’s effects were dose-dependent, with quality of life declining as the number of cigarettes smoked increased.
The authors conclude that for the best outcomes, smoking “should not be started at all.” Still, they say their results might “encourage smoking cessation” — and for those who can’t quit, cutting back “may also be beneficial,” given the “dose-dependent trend” observed.
Dr. Dave Hill, DCH
“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.” -Walt Disney