Smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death globally. With growing lifestyle changes and new diseases being discovered almost everyday, it is very important to know and understand the effects smoking has on one’s body and to consciously stay away from it.
Smoking – The history
The action of inhaling and exhaling the smoke of burnt tobacco is called smoking. The most common form of smoking is cigarettes but there are also other forms like bidis, pipes, cigars, hookahs, bongs etc. Smoking dates back to around 5000 BC and is associated with almost all cultures around the world. Early forms of smoking were restricted to religious ceremonies but quickly spread across the world as a regular practice for pleasure!
Each cigarette is a mixture of shredded tobacco leaves, its by-products and a mixture of chemicals that enhance the flavor and increase the addictive nature of the same.
What does a common tobacco roll/cigarette constitute?
In addition to tobacco leaves, each cigarette is said to constitute 599 listed ingredients, which on burning is said to produce more than 4000 other chemicals. Out of these, at least 50 chemicals are said to cause cancer and are poisonous.
Find below few listed ingredients in cigarettes and their common usage (source: American lung association)
- Acetone – found in nail polish remover
- Acetic Acid – an ingredient in hair dye
- Ammonia – a common household cleaner
- Arsenic – used in rat poison
- Benzene – found in rubber cement
- Butane – used in lighter fluid
- Cadmium – active component in battery acid
- Carbon Monoxide – released in car exhaust fumes
- Formaldehyde – embalming fluid
- Hexamine – found in barbecue lighter fluid
- Lead – used in batteries
- Naphthalene – an ingredient in moth balls
- Methanol – a main component in rocket fuel
- Nicotine – used as insecticide
- Tar – material for paving roads
- Toluene – used to manufacture paint
Why does smoking feel good?
Inhaling tobacco vapours is the most effective way of delivering the drugs into the blood stream. Nicotine,the primary psychoactive chemical found in cigarettes is extremely addictive. Once inhaled, it takes less than a second for a person to get the typical smoking buzz/high feeling. These inhaled chemicals trigger stimulation in the brain hitting the sensations of pleasure.
Smoking is also associated with adolescence, relating to risk taking attitude, peer pressure, the need to feel important and being socially accepted. Once a person is used to smoking, the avoidance of withdrawal symptoms is another reason why he/she continues smoking.
Why should you quit smoking?
There are umpteen reasons why one should quit smoking. The dangers of being affected both physiologically and psychologically by far outruns the pleasure it gives.
Tobacco usage/ smoking is related directly to a lot of health hazards including heart attacks, strokes, COPD, all forms of cancer including lungs, oral, esophageal, pancreas and bladder. Affecting the tissues of the body, tobacco causes loss of muscle strength and mass.
Smokers also are 85% more impotent when compared to non smokers and women smokers are prone to miscarriage and unhealthy fetus during pregnancy.
In addition to harming self, smokers also harm the non smokers around, causing second- hand smoke related issues including cardiovascular and respiratory diseases and lung cancer.
Take the first step to quit smoking!
Most smokers are completely aware of the health hazards, try quitting, but fail because of the fear of withdrawal symptoms. Try using products available in the market that help move away from the addiction.
Electronic cigarettes, chewing gums, tablets and patches are few effective ways of quitting cigarettes.
Electronic cigarette is a battery-powered device which simulates tobacco usage and releases a flavored substance minus the nicotine. You can easily buy Electronic cigarette on line in India.
Chewing gums acts as a smoking cessation therapy. It reduces the dependency of nicotine which is associated with cigarettes and also lowers withdrawal symptoms by controlling the nicotine craving. It is also helpful to take help from a close friend/ relative who will stay by during the withdrawal phase and to consult a physician before switching over to these substitutes. Buy Nicotex Chewing gums online with a choice of flavors.
Take a resolution this New Year to stay healthy and to stay away from any source of tobacco usage! Protect yourself and your loved ones.