Are you an avid smoker with no thoughts of the harm it may do not only to your body but others around you? This guide is for anyone who wants to learn more about the harmful effects and help you as motivation in your process of quitting.
Did you know that over 45,000 Americans die each year due to smoking tobacco? In fact, more than 5 million people die from cancer and other diseases related to smoking. Most people assume that smoking will only damage your lungs, but every major organ will also become affected by the habit.
Here are 6 harmful effects of long-term smoking.
Lung cancer is the most common effect caused by smoking. This is due to the long-term effect of inhaling ash and tar.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease COPD
COPD is either one disease or a combination that constricts the airflow in the lungs. Some of the most common symptoms of CODP are the shortness of breath and harsh coughs. This is most commonly related to smoking.
Central Nervous System Disorders
Nicotine is the mood-changing chemical that is found in tobacco. When the chemical reaches the brain, it will impact the entire nervous system. The impact will give the smoker energy for only a short period of time but will soon feel exhausted and crave for more. This will lead to severe effects and produce corticosterone, the stress hormone.
When the stress hormone is released, it will lower the nicotine impact. For those who are addicted to nicotine, their cravings will have a hard time being fulfilled under stress. Thus, they will crave for more nicotine. In the long run, the amount of nicotine needed will increase and disturb the quality level of corticosterone.
With high risks of emphysema and lung cancer, it’s important to not forget about the risks of cardiovascular disease. Smoking will cause inflammation in the body and raise blood pressure. While there is not enough proof between the heart and smoking, there is a certain link between cardiovascular disease and smoking.
High Risk of Stroke
Long time smokers are more susceptible to strokes. This is due to the double increase in blood pressure and blood clots that come from smoking. Those factors will make smokers all the more prone to having a stroke than those who do not.
Issues in the Integumentary System
The most obvious damage caused by smoking is the appearance of the teeth and skin. This is due to the compounds found in tobacco that has the ability to change the structure of the skin. The teeth and skin will lead to discoloration and wrinkles.
Do you or someone you love smoke? What is the reason? While quitting is not easy, it is better to quit now before the harmful effects begin to appear. Within a year of quitting, your lungs, skin, and teeth will begin to look better than before.