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Once regarded as socially
acceptable, smoking is now counted among
those habits which are hazardous to life.
The worst part of smoking is that, it not only
causes harm to the smoker's health but, also
to the surrounding people through passive
smoking, which means to inhale cigarette
smoke present in the environment and it is
equally harmful. Due to this reason, smoking
is highly condemned.
There are more than 4,000 identified chemicals found in
cigarette smoke, which have various carcinogenic and
mutagenic effects. The three most health damaging chemicals
in tobacco smoke are nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide.
High blood pressure
Tobacco consists of carbon monoxide and
nicotine which contributes greatly to heart
attack. Carbon monoxide reacts with
hemoglobin to form carboxyhaemoglobin.
It cannot be broken up easily and reduces
their blood carrying capacity. The heart has
to pump faster and harder to maintain a
normal blood flow, thus increasing the
Carbon dioxide and nicotine increases the
rate at which the fatty material is deposited
in the arteries, which constrict them.
Narrowed arteries supply insufficient blood
to heart muscles leading to angina pains. If
these fatty deposits completely block an
important artery such as a coronary
artery, it can lead to heart attack.
People who smoke cigarettes are
also at a grave risk of stroke. The
carbon monoxide that lives in
cigarette smoke has been
associated with hardening of
arteries, which can lead to stroke
caused by blood clots in the brain.
Nicotine in cigarettes also causes
the arteries in the legs and arms
to tighten, which increases a risk
of blood clots and damaged
arteries surrounding the heart.
Cold and flu
Tar accumulates in the lungs during smoking and
paralyzes the cilia. Due to paralysis, cilia cannot remove
dust particles, allowing dust and germs to enter the
lungs. Hence, the smoker coughs persistently. This type
of cough is called a smoker's cough. The air passages
may become inflamed and the person suffers from
bronchitis. A person suffering from bronchitis becomes
easily breathless and may not be able to walk properly or
sleep. Chronic bronchitis can be fatal.
When the air-sacs in the lungs are broken down by the
harmful chemicals in the tobacco smoke, the surface area
for the exchange of gases in and out of the body is
reduced. More air has to be moved in and out of the
lungs. This increases the rate of breathing making
breathing more painful. Emphysema prevents its sufferer
from being active
It is very common among cigarette smokers. Tar
contains many carcinogenic chemicals like
benzopyrene which cause cancer.
If the out growth or tumor obstructs the air
passages, it can result in death.
Nicotine in cigarette causes
excess production of acid by the
parietal cells, causing erosion of
stomach wall leading to ulcers.
Brain goes to the un-conscious level
at the time of intoxication and it kills
essential tissues of the brain. It can
also cause blood clotting in brain.
Smokers have significantly higher
rates of clinical anxiety compared to
Nicotine and other tobacco additives
have a direct negative impact on
dopamine and serotonin.
Smoking cigarettes can also have a
serious negative impact on cognitive
abilities, because nicotine directly
effects neurotransmitter associated
Cancer of cervix
Cancer of prostate
Cancer of kidney
Smoking can causes impotence. Male smokers
may produce less sperm and their sperm may
have more abnormalities than that of non-
Women who smoke cigarettes have earlier
The most common side effect of smoking
cigarettes is cancer. While tobacco
increases a person's risk of developing
various types of cancers, the most
common is lung cancer. Cigarette smoke
also significantly increases a person's risk
of developing cancer of the
mouth, lips, throat or voice box.
Cigarette smokers are also at an increased
risk of developing cancer in the
stomach, kidney, esophagus, pancreas, cervix
Smoking increases the risk of
miscarriage and stillbirth. Children
born to smoking mothers have lower
birth weights than the average, and
they suffer a higher risk of asthma
and chronic ear infections, less
efficient lung function, and more
frequent respiratory infections.
Women who take birth control pills
and smoke, especially those over 35
years old, have increased risk of
heart attack or stroke.
Yellow teeth are one of the
most notorious effects of long-
term smoking, but the dental
damage doesn't stop there.
People who smoke tend to
develop gum disease, persistent
bad breath, and other oral
hygiene problems. Smokers are
twice as likely to lose teeth as
Those who live with heavy smokers, are likely to
suffer from sore eyes, smoker's cough, headaches
and lung cancer caused by inhaling side-stream
Smokers and those around smokers have twice or
thrice greater chance of suffering peptic ulcers.
They also have more risk of hip, vertebral, and wrist
fractures, as the nicotine of cigarettes causes the
bones of the body to become brittle.
One of the greatest hazards of smoking is that it
decreases the body's immunity; hence, passive
smokers tend to get colds, respiratory tract
infections, and other diseases much more quickly.
Poor skin tone
Gradual loss of eye sight
Reduced athletic ability
Keeping fit is also a lot harder if you smoke.
Those who smoke:
are more easily exhausted
suffer shortness of breath
have reduced endurance
are slower to react
have poorer visual judgment