Tag Archives: smoking related disease

Book Cover for Ending the Tobacco Holocaust

The Tobacco Holocaust: Actions to Take for a Tobacco-Free World

Psychiatrist Dr. Michael Rabinoff is the author of the award-winning book Ending the Tobacco Holocaust: How Big Tobacco Affects Our Health, Pocketbook, and Political Freedom—And What We Can Do About It (Elite Books).

In this book, Dr. Rabinoff offers readers great detail on every aspect of the tobacco industry as well as how we can easily regain control of our health and economic welfare.

Ending the Tobacco Holocaust also details what we as a society can do to protect ourselves and our loved ones from falling victim to the tobacco industry.

Tobacco: Health and Financial Suicide

Dr. Rabinoff, an avid researcher and writer on the effects of tobacco on health, the economy, and politics, talks about “health and financial suicide” in Ending the Tobacco Holocaust. By detailing the strategies Big Tobacco have to ensure consumers buy and keep buying their brands of cigarettes, Dr. Rabinoff hopes to empower both smokers and non-smokers to save lives from this preventable “holocaust.”

Book Cover for Ending the Tobacco HolocaustDr. Rabinoff was motivated to write this book because he has played witness throughout his medical and psychiatric career to the devastating effects smoking has on the body, the mind, and interpersonal relationships. From witnessing people with cancer and tumors, suffering from strokes and heart attacks, to their loved ones also trying to cope with these preventable smoking-related diseases, Dr. Rabinoff calls the tobacco industry and the act of smoking a “war” that goes on every day. He discusses ways in which people can help fight this war and combat the effects it has on stress and coping levels.

Free Book Offer

Dr. Rabinoff states that he shared his observations, concerns, and tips for action with readers in order to “educate and empower people to take simple actions that will create a better world for everyone.”

Toward a Tobacco-Free World is the e-book version of Dr. Rabinoff’s Ending the Tobacco Holocaust. Anyone concerned for themselves or their loved ones over the health and economic effects of smoking can download this resource and learn what a tobacco-free world will be like.

For your free e-book, please click > Toward a Tobacco-Free World

The Effects of Smoking on Your Health, Wallet & Family

The Surgeon General notes smoking-related deaths to be the most preventable cause of death in the United States.

One in four Americans smoke cigarettes, and each year, over 400,000 people die from smoking-related diseases.

The habit of smoking also leads to tremendous financial and interpersonal relationship strains.

What Smoking Does to Your Health

Each puff of cigarette draws over 4,000 chemicals into the lungs and through the body. Continuous exposure to smoke and these chemicals leads to cellular changes in the body’s tissue, eventually causing cancers such as throat and lung cancer.

Smokers’ hearts beat an extra 20 to 25 times per minutes, increasing the risk of heart attack. There is also a 15% higher chance of a smoker having a deadly stroke or heart attack than a non-smoker.

Cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide, a lethal substance that decreases oxygen levels in the skin, brain, and other organs. The results are a reduced ability to comprehend, an increase in wrinkly-greyed skin, and a significant reduction in energy.

Smoking increase the body’s mucous production, which then increases the chances of bacteria and viruses to multiply. This leads to a smoker experiencing more colds, flus, and cases of bronchitis than non-smokers. Additionally, smoking affects the white blood cells’ functions, leaving smokers with a harder time fighting illness.

What Smoking Does to Your Wallet

All smokers are fully aware of the price of cigarettes when they purchase each pack. But if the price of each pack of cigarettes purchased over a span of 15 years for a smoker with a half-pack a day habit, the sum would total over $16,000.

In addition to the daily cost of this addiction, smokers pay more for health insurance due to the increased health consequences.

What Smoking Does to Your Family

Smoking has dire effects on family members: spouses of smokers are 20% more likely to contract lung disease due to the presence of second hand smoke. The exposure to second hand smoke also causes illness and death in children.

Families also endure extreme emotional trauma when a loved one becomes ill or dies because of smoking-related diseases.

The Real Cost of Smoking

The Secret Smoker

He would, he says, never cheat on his wife.

But each time he smokes a Camel Light, it feels like an infidelity.

He promised to quit before they married.

He stubbed out his cigarette, washed his face with scented soap and for two months he abstained.

He said his wedding vows, toasted her with champagne and honeymooned at a resort, all without a cigarette.

Back in Charlotte, as he faced work again, he felt an irresistible urge to smoke.

Cigarette SmokerHe opened his desk drawer and there it was, a pack of Camel Lights he had hidden. He reached in. With more desire than regret, he got up and returned to his old haunt, an alcove behind his office where he knew he would find the other smokers standing around a terra cotta flowerpot.

The first couple of puffs tasted bitter the way he remembers his first cigarette in junior high.

Then a familiar heady adrenaline rush kicked in, and he was hooked all over again.

The Closet Smoker

He is The Closet Smoker, and that pack of Camel Lights in his desk is his dirty little secret.

You may know someone like him: an alcoholic perhaps, or a gambler or drug abuser. The pleasure they get from their addictions makes them do things they would not ordinarily do: indulge in risky behavior and lie about it.

The Closet Smoker knows better. In so many other ways he takes care of himself and the people around him. He lifts weights, takes a multivitamin and avoids fast food. He enjoys a good bottle of wine and an occasional sushi dinner out, but he’s not extravagant. If his car needs an oil change or tire rotation, he does it himself.

He’s not yet 40, a professional in Charlotte. His boss says she’s impressed by his savvy and creativity, and by the little things he does to help around the office, such as cleaning up the kitchen.

Most evenings, he cooks dinner for his wife. He phones his mother every day, or sends an instant message. Weekends, he might take his daughter golfing or to Carowinds. On Sundays, you’ll find him in church. His best friends know his secret. Everybody at work knows. But not the people who mean the most to him, his wife, his mother and his daughter.

He’s embarrassed to admit he lies to them. He says he wouldn’t lie for any other reason. He feels guilty, ashamed that he’s capable of deceiving the three most important people in his life for a cigarette. He worries what will happen if they find out.

They’re right, and he knows it. He shouldn’t smoke. It’s bad for him. He researched smoking for a science project in eighth grade and discovered that a few drops of nicotine in liquid form can kill you.

Years of smoking, he knows, might kill him, too.

The Nature of Cigarette Addiction

The Closet Smoker is sensible about most things. Yet his compulsion to smoke overpowers his common sense. That’s the nature of addiction.

It’s part of being human. Our brains are wired to reinforce behaviors we need to survive. Eating, drinking, sex. These behaviors stimulate pleasure circuits in the brain. Nicotine over-stimulates the circuits. It floods the brain with a neurotransmitter called dopamine that makes us feel good. Cocaine and heroin act in similar ways.

One reason nicotine and these other drugs are so addictive is they work on the same brain circuitry we use for survival.

Our brains become hijacked. We have to have more.

Scientists have turned to brain imaging to learn about addiction. They discovered that the decision-making part of an addict’s brain, the region that controls judgment, is no longer as effective. That could help explain why we become hooked on things when we know we shouldn’t.

  • Nicotine
  • Cocaine
  • Alcohol
  • Steroids
  • Gambling
  • Shoplifting
  • Caffeine
  • Sugar
  • Work
  • Sex

We’re all capable of addictive behavior.

Anything to look cool

The Closet Smoker’s initiation came in middle school. His older brother smoked, and The Closet Smoker occasionally sneaked one.

He wanted to like cigarettes. He wanted to look grown-up like his brother.

But what he remembers most from those early attempts is a burning sensation on the tip of his tongue and in his chest, followed by a fit of coughing.

He bought his first pack freshman year in high school. He was 15. State law then as now said no one under 18 could buy cigarettes, and for a while he bummed off older friends. Then he learned about a convenience store on the way to school where the clerk didn’t check IDs.

He asked for Marlboros. Everybody he knew smoked Marlboro’s, the cowboy’s brand, America’s favorite cigarette. He wanted to be like everybody. He paid for that first pack with money he earned bagging groceries at the Winn-Dixie.

He tucked the little red and white box in his backpack and headed off to school, a member of a new fraternity.

He ignored the taste. It was more important to him to be like everybody than to actually enjoy smoking. And it didn’t take too many cigarettes before the taste grew on him like the taste of another adult pleasure he had learned to like, black coffee.

He says most students smoked. The fortunes of their town, like so many towns in North Carolina, were built on tobacco. It was still the state’s biggest cash crop when he was in school, and even now brings in $400 million a year.

Of course, teenagers smoked.

Many of their parents did, too. The Closet Smoker’s dad smoked three packs a day for 30 years before giving it up.

High school students could smoke between classes, at recess and at lunch with a parent’s permission. The Closet Smoker’s parents didn’t approve, but he says he got so he could get in a smoke in 45 seconds and no one ever caught him.

He remembers the night of a basketball game, hanging out in the parking lot with friends, most of them sneaking beer, then one person asked if anyone had a cigarette and another person wanted one, too, and then another. He was the only one with a pack, and he passed it around.

That night, he was The Man.

Loved Ones Worry

His first wife, he says, hated his smoking. Before they married, he was up to a pack and a half a day. Thirty cigarettes every day.

He says she complained about the smell, and the taste when they kissed, and the stale odor of his clothes, and the butts in the flowerpot on the deck.

Most of all, he says, she hated what smoking might do to him: the heart disease and bronchitis, asthma, emphysema, lung cancer and other cancers.

Everyone knows smoking kills. Half of all Americans who smoke will die because of it, about 400,000 people every year, twice as many people as die from alcohol, drugs, fires, car accidents, homicide, suicide and AIDS combined.

Kids in preschool know smoking kills. Yet more than 46 million people in our country smoke. The Closet Smoker, like many addicts, assumes it won’t happen to him.

He Tried To Quit

He really did, he says, and once he almost succeeded.

He went without a cigarette for several months after college and he felt much better. He had more stamina. He no longer had that nagging smoker’s cough.

Then he took a job at a company where most employees smoked. They stopped working every day at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. for 15 minutes of smoking and socializing.

Within two weeks, he was in there with them.

He tried to hide his habit after his daughter was born, but when she was 4 she caught him.

He had sneaked out to the patio like a teenager. She went looking for him. She opened the door and there stood her father, a cigarette dangling between his lips.

Daddy, that’s nasty!

He felt ashamed. He snuffed out the butt between his fingers and flushed it down the toilet. But he didn’t quit. From that day on, he just made sure he never again smoked around her.

He doesn’t want his daughter to smoke.

His parents didn’t want him to.

His dad once offered him $1,000 if he would quit.

The Closet Smokers Deception

The Closet Smoker thinks he’s fooling his new wife.

He smokes his last cigarette at work around 4:30 most afternoons, then washes away the smell from his face with scented soap. He drives home, car windows open, chewing gum or sucking mints. He chews gum on weekends just so she won’t wonder why he’s always chewing gum when he gets home from work.

He doesn’t smoke in his car. He doesn’t smoke on Saturdays or Sundays. He sometimes smokes when he’s out to lunch, but mostly he confines his smoking to the alcove behind his office.

He and two co-workers knock on each other’s doors on their way out, four or five times a day, more on bad days. The Closet Smoker says he enjoys the socializing as much as the smoking. If he didn’t smoke, how could he justify taking so many breaks?

They stand in the alcove in 104-degree heat. They’re out there in freezing rain. They can’t be picky. Finding a place to smoke is not easy any more.

You certainly can’t smoke at school. In your office? Few businesses allow it. Even outdoors in many places, you’re a pariah; no one wants to breathe your secondhand smoke.

As bare and ugly as the alcove is, The Closet Smoker looks forward to being there every Monday morning.

What Happens Inside

Every Monday morning, after two days without nicotine, his first cigarette gives him a kick more powerful than any he’ll get all week.He balances the Camel Light between his lips, then cuffs his hands around his lighter. A flame shoots up. The tip of the cigarette burns. He inhales, drawing smoke deep inside. Particles of tar, the same stuff used to pave highways, carry the nicotine through his windpipe, then down his left and right bronchi and into his lungs.

He holds onto the smoke for a few seconds before exhaling.

The nicotine flows through small tubes in his lungs called bronchioles and into millions of tiny air sacs that puff up every time he inhales. From there, it enters his bloodstream.

It takes about eight seconds to reach his brain.

Before he can take another puff, he feels the effects of the first. The gratification is immediate and that’s one reason nicotine is so addictive.

He feels a lift of energy. His heart beats faster, his blood pressure rises. He is focused, more attentive. He feels ready to tackle work again.

What he doesn’t feel are the poisons circulating through his body:

Cyanide, benzene, formaldehyde, methanol and acetylene, ammonia, carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, more than 4,000 chemicals in each cigarette, the same chemicals used to kill rats, make gasoline and nail polish, and embalm dead bodies.

The nicotine is what hooked him; it’s the chemicals in cigarettes that may kill him.

They’re the reason this summer he couldn’t swim underwater from one end of his apartment pool and back again without coming up for air.

He says his wife blamed his lack of stamina on years of smoking, not knowing he is still at it.

A Partial Confession

Since they married, he says she has confronted him a few times about the smell of cigarettes.

His heart beat faster, his blood pressure rose, but not in a pleasant way. He says he confessed. Sort of. He says he told her each time that, yes, he smoked that day. He didn’t tell her he smokes every day at work.

He says she hates the smell and the taste and, most of all, she hates what cigarettes might do to him. How could he promise to be with her forever, when he shortens forever by several minutes or more with every cigarette?

He says he had every intention of quitting. He’s had every intention of quitting every time he’s tried. Most smokers want to quit, but it usually takes several tries. The Closet Smoker says he has tried 15 to 20 times.

What the Secret Smokers Tells Himself

Maybe he can’t quit. So he gives himself permission, the way addicts do: “I firmly believe that a lot of lung cancer that’s smoking related is because people sit inside and continuously breathe in the smoke. I don’t smoke inside.”

He rationalizes, the way addicts do, that his smoking doesn’t affect his family because he doesn’t smoke in front of them.

But The Closet Smoker is a smart guy and when he hears what he’s just said, he knows it doesn’t make sense. “Now that I’ve said it out loud, I guess it’s a little short-sighted of me because I don’t see it as directly affecting them. Long-sighted, my health and my early demise will affect them.”

Most of all, he says, he hates deceiving the people he loves.

Smoking Kills, Yet We Light Up

One in 20 middle school students in North Carolina smokes cigarettes, according to the American Lung Association. By high school, one in five students in the state smokes, and the percentage grows slightly among adults. They smoke despite evidence that smoking is responsible for nearly one in five deaths in the United States. Consider these statistics from the CDC:

  1. Smoking causes 90 percent of lung cancer deaths in women, and nearly 80 percent in men, and many other types of cancer.
  2. If you smoke, you’re two to four times as likely to develop coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States.
  3. Smoking doubles a person’s risk for stroke.

    Smokers in the Closet

    More than 46 million people in the United States smoke, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    No one knows how many are closet smokers. After news reports that ABC News anchor Peter Jennings, a former smoker, had lung cancer, New York magazine polled 100 smokers; one-third said they hid their habit from parents, bosses, children or spouses.

    Want to Quit Smoking?

    Call toll-free in North and South Carolina, 1-800-Quit-Now.

    American Lung Association’s “Quit Smoking Cessation Plan”

    Tobacco prevention in North Carolina

    Teens can get help at NCNot.com


    How We Reported the Story

    Elizabeth Leland interviewed Professor Steven Childers of Wake Forest University School of Medicine, who studies the effect of drug addiction on the brain, and Dr. Cindy Miner, a deputy director at the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Leland also researched addiction and nicotine through publications such as “Psychology Today” and on Web sites of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Stanford University, Harvard University and others. She read about the history and economics of tobacco, and got data from the N.C. Department of Agriculture and the American Cancer Society. She interviewed The Closet Smoker and his boss. He agreed to be the subject of a story on condition that she not reveal his identity.

    Source: Elizabeth Leland, Charlotte Observer

    Smoking Cigarettes Effects on Lung Health

    Every time you inhale smoke from a cigarette, you kill some of the alveoli, or the air sacks in your lungs.

    These air sacks are where the oxygen that you breathe in is transferred into your blood.

    The alveoli will not grow back.

    So if you destroy them, you permanently have destroyed part of your lungs.

    Alveoli Lung Air Sacks ImageSmoking paralyzes the cilia that line your lungs.

    Cilia are little hair like structures that move back and forth to sweep particles out of your lungs. When you smoke, the cilia can not move and can not do their job.

    So dust, pollen, and other things that you inhale they sit in your lungs and build up.

    Also, there are a lot of particles in smoke that get into your lungs. Since your cilia are paralyzed because of the smoke and can not clean them out, the particles sit in your lungs and form tar.

    Risk of Contracting Heart Disease for Smokers

    If you are a smoker, you may wonder what your risk is for developing heart disease.

    Research has shown a person’s increased risk of contracting is directly proportional to the length of time that a person continues to smoke as well as the amount smoked.

    So if you smoke one or two cigarettes a day, you are at risk. If you smoke a pack or two a day, your risk greatly increases.

    Heart ImageHowever, if someone stops smoking, then these chances gradually decrease over time because the body has the ability to slowly repair the damage caused from smoking.

    A year after quitting, the risk of contracting heart disease is half that of a continuing smoker. Other symptoms from smoking can also gradually heal.

    Click to learn more about > Heart Disease, Cardiovascular Disease

    ~American Heart Association

    Passive Smoking Happens to Pets Too

    Fluffy, Fido, and Tweety all suffer from the secondhand smoke of their owners, according to a growing body of literature that has looked at the issue, said Carolynn MacAllister, a veterinarian with the Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service.

    Cats are twice as likely to develop malignant melanoma if they live with smokers as with nonsmokers.

    This form of cancer kills three out of four felines within a year of its onset. Cats also are more likely to develop mouth cancers.

    MacAllister said that cats’ grooming habits contribute to their risk. “Cats constantly lick themselves while grooming, they lick up the cancer-causing carcinogens that accumulate on their fur” and deposit relatively high concentrations of those chemicals into their mouths.

    Dog with Face MaskLong nosed dogs suffer higher rates of nasal cancers as the carcinogens accumulate along those mucus membrane passageways. They seldom survive more than a year. In contrast, short nosed dogs do not filter the carcinogens as effectively, as a result, more of those deadly chemicals reach their lungs and they are more likely to develop lung cancer.

    And feathered pets are not immune either. “A bird’s respiratory system is hypersensitive to any type of pollutant in the air,” MacAllister said. Living with a smoker makes birds particularly vulnerable to pneumonia and lung cancer. That is particularly true because caged birds cannot engage in vigorous flying that helps to clear the lungs of toxins.

    “Curious pets can eat cigarettes and other tobacco products if they aren’t stored properly.” MacAllister warned. “This can cause nicotine poisoning, which can be fatal.”

    Smokers themselves are 50 percent more likely to develop dementia than nonsmokers, according to a recent study of 7,000 people 55 or older that was conducted over seven years in the Netherlands.

    “Smoking increases the risk of cerebrovascular disease and oxidative stress, which can damage cells in the blood vessels and lead to hardening of the arteries,” said lead researcher Dr. Monique Breteler of the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam.

    Erectile dysfunction is a more immediate risk from smoking. A four-year study of 7,684 men in China, ages 35-74, found a statistical link between the number of cigarettes smoked and ED. It estimated that almost a quarter of all ED could be attributed to cigarettes.

    And the habit is expensive, even before figuring in the added cost of Viagra. A study from New York City estimates that the average pack-a-day smoker burns up $2,500 a year with their habit.

    It showed that low-income persons are more likely to try to quit smoking than those with a high income (68 versus 60 percent), but they are less likely to succeed in doing so.

    Many private health plans and local health departments have developed programs to help people quite smoking. They often include free or reduced rates for counseling sessions and interventions such as nicotine gum or the patch.

    For information about programs in San Francisco, visit the Tobacco Free Project’s Web site at http://sftfc.globalink.org/. For information statewide, call 1-800-NO-BUTTS. ~

    Click to learn more about > Melanoma

    ~Bob Roehr, The Bay Area Reporter

    5 Lung Cancer Symptoms Most People Don’t Know About

    If you are wondering what symptoms of lung cancer might feel like, here is a list to look out for if you are a smoker or ex smoker.

    Shoulder or upper back pain: Pain in the shoulder or upper back is a often unnoticed lung cancer symptom. The pain results from a tumor pressing on the lining of the lungs.

    Swelling of the face and neck is also a lung cancer symptom: Tumors can often put pressure of blood vessels, not allowing fluids to to travel as efficiently throughout the body. The fluids then build up, causing swelling of the face and neck.

    Lung ImageFrequently having pneumonia or other lung infections: Tumor cells can trap bacteria causing frequent lung infections.

    Frequently getting pneumonia is also a symptom of lung cancer.

    Male breast development: Gynecomastia is the over development of the male breast and can be a symptom of lung cancer in men. Breast growth in men is normally due to the increase of estrogen. Lung cancer has been known to produce estrogen.

    Hoarseness: Do you constantly feel like you have to clear your throat or your throat feels hoarse. This is a very common symptom of lung cancer. Lung cancer tumor cells can block passageways leading to many symptoms, like hoarseness.

    More About Lung Cancer: If you are experiencing the symptoms of lung cancer, please see your doctor. Keep in mind that these symptoms of lung cancer are also the symptoms of many other benign condition.

    Source: Lisa Fayed,
    Your Guide to Cancer.
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    Peripheral Arterial Disease and Smoking

    “About 80% of the patients whose legs or extremities I have to amputate are current smokers. If they are not current smokers, then they almost certainly used to smoke.

    If patients presenting with PAD have never smoked, I have cause to doubt whether they have the disease at all.” -Mr. Daryll Baker, Consultant vascular surgeon, Royal Free Hospital.

    The most common cause of peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is atherosclerosis. In atherosclerosis, fatty deposits (plaques) build up in your artery walls and reduce blood flow.

    PAD mimics a condition similar to coronary artery disease and carotid artery disease where fatty deposits build up in the inner linings of the artery walls.

    These blockages restrict blood circulation, mainly in arteries leading to the kidneys, stomach, arms, legs, and feet.

    Book Cover of Peripheral Arterial DiseaseRobert S. Schwartz, MD states: “Atherosclerosis and PAD is pretty much the same thing. Atherosclerosis is the hardening of the arteries.

    It’s the plaque that builds up; it’s the calcium, the fats, the fibrous tissue, the scarring that grows into the arteries and stops the blood from flowing into the legs.”

    In the UK, about 2.7 million people age 55 or older, have some degree of peripheral arterial disease and almost 8-12 million people in the United States who have this disease are unaware of having this condition.

    PAD is often silent for a very long time before you will notice any symptoms. Some Symptoms of PAD may include:

    1. Foot pain that does not go away when you stop exercising
    2. Cold and numb feet or toes
    3. Leg numbness or weakness
    4. A change in the color of your legs
    5. Decreased leg strength, function, and poor balance
    6. Experiencing discomfort within the muscles of the calves or the thighs, or the buttocks may be indicative of claudication (PAD leg pain occurs in the muscles, not the joints)
    7. Hair loss on your feet and legs
    8. Changes in your nails
    9. Foot pain at rest, which indicates that PAD is getting worse
    10. Foot or toe wounds that will not heal or heal very slowly
    11. Erectile dysfunction
    12. Gangrene

    *Symptoms of peripheral vascular disease depend on what artery is affected and how severely the blood flow is reduced.

    One of the serious sub effects of peripheral vascular disease is Buerger’s disease (thromboangiitis obliterans). It is characterized by a combination of inflammation and clots in the arteries and veins that obstruct blood flow.

    Brandon Carmichael is a young man who has suffered this disease to an extreme, having had his left leg amputated below the knee from smoking.

    The risk of peripheral vascular disease is dramatically increased in smokers. When a person stops smoking, regardless of how much he or she may have smoked in the past, their risk of peripheral vascular disease rapidly declines.

    In a Health Briefing on Silent Epidemic, Peripheral Arterial Disease article Alan T. Hirsch, MD, Chair, P.A.D. Coalition states, “Peripheral arterial disease is the most dangerous disease that most Americans have never heard of”.

    The same article continues with the following warning: “People with peripheral arterial disease – P.A.D. – have up to a six-fold increase in cardiovascular death. Without early detection and proper treatment, one in four people with P.A.D. will suffer a heart attack, stroke, amputation or die within the next five years.”

    If you add a bad diet and a sedentary lifestyle into this equation, you probably have a prescription to die much younger. How many smokers with Peripheral Arterial Disease have died of a heart attack or stroke where the connection to smoking as a risk factor fell silent?

    An absence of a pulse in your legs or arms should immediately alert your health care provider to seek further testing for Peripheral Arterial Disease. eMedicineHealth has an excellent article on Exams and Tests regarding Peripheral Arterial Disease. It is very important that you consult with your health care provider if you believe that you are at risk for this disease.

    Are you a smoker? If you are a smoker the most important thing you can do for your health is to educate yourself about smoking-related diseases. If you are an ex-smoker, you also need to stay abreast of learning about smoking-related diseases. Knowledge is power!


    References:

    Just Don’t Smoke!

    At 2.6 years quit I rarely think of smoking anymore.

    If I do entertain the concept of smoking I almost always cancel out the thought instantly.

    The most important aspect of the quit process is to become educated about what smoking does to the human body.

    As a young quit I forced myself to watch a Lung Bronchoscopy of a patient with lung cancer.

    He was a 57 year old man who had a 75 pack year history, with carcinoma in the upper portion of his right lung. Or for those who think that you have a lifetime before you have to quit smoking, check out Brandon Carmichael.

    In hospital settings I’ve watched patients struggle with oxygen tanks and gasp to catch even one breath. I have also stood helpless as a lung cancer patient coughed up bloody phlegm while choking on his own body fluids.

    I’ve listened to the whistling and wheezing while calculating the buildup of bluish discoloration of oxygen starved faces and clubbed fingers. How much longer will they or you suffer from smoking-related diseases, gasping for the air that that is essential to every human in order to survive?

    Hand Holding CigarettesReplacing wispy shrouds of romanticized longings for the daily cigarette ebbed; craves were slowly replaced over time with alpha iron armor structured in smoking-related disease research.

    I began to see myself as a female combatant who existed in a world that was torn between personal inalienable rights and too much governmental control. I also learned that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness could not be achieved at the cost of human addiction.

    Somewhere a line has to be drawn. Should we give the unborn, babies, toddlers, children, and nonsmokers who live on our planet the right to live and breathe in both private and public air space? Or should we simply delegate the right for smokers to pollute our air space and subject everyone to second-hand smoke?

    In 2006 the Surgeon General released a new report on secondhand smoke, which stated that there is no safe level of exposure to the more than 4,000 chemicals, including 11 known human carcinogens in secondhand smoke.

    The World Health Organization States:

    Tobacco is the second major cause of death in the world. It is currently responsible for the death of one in ten adults worldwide (about 5 million deaths each year).

    If current smoking patterns continue, it will cause some 10 million deaths each year by 2020. Half the people that smoke today -that is about 650 million people- will eventually be killed by tobacco.

    If you choose to smoke, your smoke is a toxic air contaminant. Be kind to yourself, other people, and to our planet. Just don’t smoke.