LIVING ON THE EDGE

HOW DOES SMOKING AFFECT OUR BODIES?

INTRO

Smoking

Smoking is a practice of inhaling and exhaling of smoke burnt from tobacco leaves in cigars, cigarettes or pipes. Smoking as a practice started in the early 1500s. Nowadays many people in the world smoke cigarettes nowadays but many don't know that it's harming their bodies.

Respiratory System

Effects on your body

Smoking can harm all the systems about but the one of the most damaged/harmed system is the respiratory system. When people smoke they take in harmful substances that over time makes your lungs lose the ability to filter bad chemicals. It can lead to different chronicle obstructive pulmonary diseases for example chronicle bronchitis.


When you have chronicle bronchitis, the linings in the tubes of your lungs become inflamed and produces a lot of mucus. This leads to coughing and lung cancer, which is caused the most from smoking.


One of the worse effects from smoking is getting lung cancer. When you have lung cancer the cells in your lungs are abnormally large and group together that form a tumor. These cancer cells grow by themselves without order and have no control. They destroy the healthy lung tissue around it and if it grows too fast it prevents other organs in your body from functioning properly.

Withdrawal from tobacco can cause temporary congestion and let the pain from your lungs clear out slowly.


Children of parents who smoke have a higher chance of coughing, wheezing and asthma attacks than children who's parents don't smoke. They also have a higher chance of pneumonia and bronchitis.

Digestive/Nervous System

Effects of your body

Cigarettes have around 600 ingredients. When you smoke it, it releases more than 7,000 chemicals. Many are poisonous and 69 can cause cancer. One of the ingredients in cigarettes is called nicotine and it can alter your mood in different ways. It can reach your brain within seconds and at the start it will make you much more energised but after a while you will feel tired and crave more of that nicotine.


In your body, there is a stress hormone called corticosterone and it can lower the effects of nicotine. When you are under a lot of stress, you will need a lot of nicotine that can get you body back to normal.


Withdrawal from nicotine can cause headaches and sleeping problems. Withdrawal can also make you feel anxious, worried, depressed and irritated.


Smoking also has a great risk for oral problems. Smoking can cause your gums to inflame (gingivitis) or get infected (periodontitis). These problems can lead to tooth decay, tooth loss and bad breath.


Smoking also effects insulin and it can develop insulin resistance, which puts you in a risk of having type 2 diabetes. When you have diabetes, smoking can make you develop problems much faster than people who don't smoke.

Factors

Socio-economic/Evironmental

In the perspective of a smoker with low income, it can be harder to cope with stress and it just turns into a cycle: They just smoke, suffer, spend and most of these cases lead to death of the smoker. Sometimes for people smoke and are in poverty cigarettes are their loyal "friend" who helps them relieve stress and boredom.


Challenges:

- Once someone starts smoking they don't have the ability to believe that they can quit smoking because they are so addicted.

- Sometimes people have little knowledge about what they are doing their own bodies and don't know how to quit and are too scared to be laughed or scolded at.

- When someone tries to quit smoking it can lead to depression, anxiety or relapse.


In the perspective of a doctor, the economic factors could be better because if they help even one smoker, it saves the government's money and that money can be used for some other reasons.


In cigarettes, one of the most important ingredient is tobacco and when people eat cigarettes there needs to be more tobacco. In Africa, 5% of the deforestation is because of tobacco. Every year nearly 600 million trees are cut down just so it can be used to dry tobacco.

Solutions

Simple but easier said then done

Exercise - Exercising improves cardiovascular health, which leads to better lungs and also produces chemicals that reduce the cravings for nicotine and tobacco. Before you do all this you should ask your physician if you have any physical problems and the level of difficulty you should start with.


Clean - You should clean your house, car, clothes or anywhere with any smell of tobacco, that way you can start with a fresh, clean smell to your new healthy life!


Avoid caffeine or alcohol - Caffeine and alcohol both increase your cravings for nicotine and can easily lead to people smoking a few cigarettes and forgetting the fact that they are trying to quit.


Drink more water and fresh juices - Try to drink as much water and fresh juices so that it can wash down all the damaging chemicals in your body caused from smoking.


Get some medication - If trying many of the solutions don't help, consider going to the doctor's and get some medication. There are several medications that can help reduce the cravings for nicotine and tobacco, but that's all. It can't help with the physical habits or the mindset, but sometimes the smoker will be required to put the cigarettes down. Although this solution may seem better than the others but it can't be substituted because trying these other solutions at the same time can help bring the problem along faster.

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