I've been through losing someone who is killed due to smoking and the feeling sucks.
To many, they will think that I'll die no matter what, so why not just smoke and live with it?
The most selfish fact is that passive smokers will be impacted too, which means friends and family members who are NON-SMOKERS will have to face the fact of having cancer.
Short overview of how smoking harms
Why people smoke?
Smoking is one of the most difficult addictions to break. Scientists estimate that cigarettes are more addictive than cocaine, heroin, or alcohol. According to the World Health Organization, smoking kills more people than any disease in the world. With all this information readily available, why do people continue to smoke?
Nicotine is a high addictive drug that makes one feel alert and energize thus most people who started are unable to stop. Smokers feel high after a cigarette, and quitting leads to withdrawal symptoms that include difficulty sleeping and cravings. Seventy percent of people who quit smoking eventually start again.
Tobacco advertising also has a big influence on why people smoke. For years, smoking has been made glamorous through movies, television, and billboards. Now, though cigarette advertising is controlled, its influence can still be felt in the form of free samples, smoking cartoons, and the promise of cool merchandise that can be obtained in exchange for coupons printed on cigarette packs. In addition, smoking reduces the sense of taste thus claim that smoking keeps them thin. Whereas, the fact is they do not enjoy food as much.
Psychological dependency is one of the reasons why people smoke. Smoking helps to relax and cope with difficult situations, or because it gives them more confidence and a feeling of satisfaction. Others smoke due to boredom. Finally, people who smoke are usually in denial – they are aware of the effects of smoking yet choose to continue as it does not seem that bad.
Smoking is a social activity as well. Many people who smoke do so as a way to start conversations and interact at parties or in crowded places. This is known as "social smoking," and it usually involves alcohol as a complement.
Many teenagers start smoking due to peer pressure. They may also smoke to feel more mature or as a form of rebellion against parental authority. It has been proved that children are also more likely to smoke if their parents do.
Effects of Tobacco Smoke
- Every year hundreds of thousands of people around the world die from diseases caused by smoking.
- One in two lifetime smokers will die from their habit. Half of these deaths will occur in middle age.
- Tobacco smoke also contributes to a number of cancers.
- The mixture of nicotine and carbon monoxide in each cigarette you smoke temporarily increases your heart rate and blood pressure, straining your heart and blood vessels.
- This can cause heart attacks and stroke. It slows your blood flow, cutting off oxygen to your feet and hands. Some smokers end up having their limbs amputated.
- Tar coats your lungs like soot in a chimney and causes cancer. A 20-a-day smoker breathes in up to a full cup (210 g) of tar in a year. Changing to low-tar cigarettes does not help because smokers usually take deeper puffs and hold the smoke in for longer, dragging the tar deeper into their lungs.
- Carbon monoxide robs your muscles, brain and body tissue of oxygen, making your whole body and especially your heart work harder. Over time, your airways swell up and let less air into your lungs.
- Smoking causes disease and is a slow way to die. The strain put on your body by smoking often causes years of suffering. Emphysema is an illness that slowly rots your lungs. People with emphysema often get bronchitis again and again, and suffer lung and heart failure.
- Lung cancer from smoking is caused by the tar in tobacco smoke. Men who smoke are ten times more likely to die from lung cancer than non-smokers.
- Heart disease and strokes are also more common among smokers than non-smokers.
- Smoking causes fat deposits to narrow and block blood vessels which leads to heart attack.
- Smoking causes around one in five deaths from heart disease.
- In younger people, three out of four deaths from heart disease are due to smoking.
Effects of 2nd Hand smoke
Passive smoking occurs when the exhaled and ambient smoke from one person's cigarette is inhaled by other people. Non-smokers exposed to second hand smoke are at greater risk for many of the health problems associated with direct smoking.
Non-smokers living with smokers have about a 25 per cent increase in risk of death from heart attack and are also more likely to suffer a stroke, and some research suggests that risks to non-smokers may be even greater than this estimate.
Passive smoking is especially risky for children and babies and can cause low birth weight babies, sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), bronchitis, pneumonia, and middle ear infections.
Do treasure your life and the people around you.
Your health is what you introduce, how you maintain it.
So make your decision wisely.