Tag Archives: tobacco habit

Smoking-Related Illnesses Come with Significant Costs

Nicotine dependence is the physical vulnerability to the chemical nicotine, which is potently addicting when delivered by various tobacco products.

Smoke from cigarettes, cigars and pipes contains thousands of chemicals, including nicotine.

Being addicted to tobacco brings a host of health problems related to the substances in tobacco smoke. These effects include damage to the lungs, heart and blood vessels.

According to the American Lung Association, smoking cost the United States over $193 billion in 2004, including $97 billion in lost productivity and $96 billion in direct health care expenditures, or an average of $4,260 per adult smoker.

Vintage Photo Girl SmokingWhen people inhale, they are ingesting a chemical parade that marches through the body’s vital organs. Mayo Clinic.com reviews the negative health effects throughout the body, including:

Lungs. Smoking is the cause of most cases of lung cancer. Smoking also is the primary cause of other lung problems, such as emphysema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and chronic bronchitis.

Heart and circulatory system. Smoking increases your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease, including heart attack and stroke. If people smoke more than 25 cigarettes daily, they have five times the risk of heart disease compared to someone who doesn’t smoke.

Cancer. Smoking is a major cause of cancer of the esophagus, larynx, throat (pharynx) and mouth and contributes to cancer of the bladder, pancreas, liver, kidney, cervix, stomach, colon and rectum, and some leukemias.

Appearance. The chemicals in tobacco smoke can dry and irritate the skin, as well as promote wrinkles. Smoking also yellows teeth, fingers and fingernails.

Fertility. Smoking increases the risk of infertility and miscarriage in women and the risk of impotence and infertility in men.

Senses. Smoking deadens the senses of taste and smell, so food isn’t as appetizing as it once was.For most people, smoking cessation is difficult. In fact, quitting smoking might be one of the most challenging things an individual ever does. A feature on MayoClinic.com explains why smoking cessation matters, what to expect and how to stick with it.

Rochester, MN (PRWEB) October 10, 2008 

About the Mayo Clinic Website

Launched in 1995 and visited more than 15 million times a month, this award-winning Web site offers health information, self-improvement and disease management tools to empower people to manage their health.

Produced by a team of Web professionals and medical experts, MayoClinic.com gives users access to the experience and knowledge of the more than 3,300 physicians and scientists of Mayo Clinic.

MayoClinic.com offers intuitive, easy-to-use tools such as “Symptom Checker” and “First-Aid Guide” for fast answers about health conditions ranging from common to complex; as well as an A-Z library of more than 850 diseases and conditions, in-depth sections on 24 common diseases and conditions, 16 healthy living areas including food and nutrition, recipes, fitness and weight control, videos, animations and features such as “Ask a Specialist” and “Drug Watch.”

Users can sign up for a free weekly e-newsletter called “Housecall” which provides the latest health information from Mayo Clinic.

For more information, visit > The MayoClinic.com – Nicotine dependence

Smoking Reversible?

Risk of death from tobacco related diseases or various forms of cancer declines dramatically five years after kicking the habit.

Women who quit smoking reduce their risk of dying from heart disease and tobacco-related cancers.

Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health analyzed data on 105,000 women over 24 years, taken from the Nurses’ Health Study, a long-term survey that began at Harvard in 1976.

Stacey Kenfield is lead author of the new report. She says the data show harm from smoking can be reversed over time to the level of a non-smoker. “For coronary heart disease for example, your risk declines to a non-smokers’ risk within 20 years. For all causes it declines at 20 years. For lung cancer it is after 30 years.”

Kenfield says scientists observed almost immediate benefits when the women kicked the habit. “We saw a 47 percent reduction in risk for coronary heart disease within the first five years [of quitting] and a 21 percent reduction in lung cancer death within the first five years.” Kenfield says the data also indicate that smoking is more dangerous the younger a woman is when she starts. “If you start before you are 17, you have a 21-fold higher risk than a non-smoker. But if you start after the age of 26 you only have a 9-fold higher risk of dying from lung cancer.”

Picture of Girl SmokingBased on that evidence, Kenfield recommends high schools offer more programs to help students quit. “If you would like to see the whole potential benefit from your cigarette cessation, you really need to quit as soon as possible.”

Tobacco is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States. The World Health Organization attributed 5 million deaths to smoking in 2000. That number is expected to climb to 10 million tobacco-related deaths by 2030. Kenfield’s study is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Source: Voice of America News

Seven Reasons to Stop Smoking

Do you smoke?

Thinking of quitting?

Discovery Health lists seven reasons why you should quit smoking right now.

Don’t wait another minute, read this list now, and really think about these seven reasons.

If not just for yourself, think of how you are effecting your loved ones.

They might just persuade you ditch the smokes before it’s too late…

seven.jpg1. You smell pretty bad
Bad breath and body odor, sallow skin, smelly clothes, yellow teeth – what’s not to love? Maybe it is time stub it out.

2. Food doesn’t taste as good
Smoking can permanently harm your sense of smell, which in turns affects your tasting experience. This can be reversible, but you do run the risk of permanent damage to this sensory experience.

3. More time in hospital
The carcinogens released when you light up gives you a better chance to develop cancer of the mouth, lung and throat, and your basic flu easily turns into bronchitis or pneumonia. You are more likely to spend some quality time with healthcare professionals than a non-smoker.

4. Your body ages faster
Want to look nine years older than you actually are? Then have a cigarette, don’t exercise too much and just for good measure add a bit of weight to your frame. The good news is that it is reversible. If you stop smoking, do some mild exercise and lose the weight, you can look and also feel younger than your actual age.

5. Smoking harms your children
Smoking during pregnancy can lower your child’s IQ and lead to low birth weight, still births, miscarriages, birth defects such as cleft lip and sudden infant death syndrome (cot death). Cigarette smoke contains an estimated 4000 chemicals, with nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide thought to be the most dangerous to the fetus.

6. You have to exercise harder
Your lungs aren’t operating at full volume due to the tar and increased levels of carbon monoxide in your lungs. This poisonous gas is quickly absorbed into the blood, reducing its capacity to carry oxygen. As a result, the smoker has to exert more physical effort to attain a given task than does a non-smoker. The heart in particular must work harder, particularly during rigorous exercise. Increased levels of carbon monoxide in the blood can impair vision, perception of time, and co-ordination.

7. You can pass risks onto your kids
Like father like son… Most children of smokers will take up the habit as well or suffer the consequences of second-hand smoke.

Smokers Risk Damage to All Major Body Organs

Health Consequences of Smoking, Surgeon General’s Report

Smokers risk damage to almost all major organs in their bodies, according to the latest report by the surgeon general

The list of diseases caused by tobacco now includes cancers of the kidneys, stomach, cervix, and pancreas as well as leukemia, cataracts, pneumonia, and gum disease.

These illnesses are in addition to diseases previously known to be caused by smoking: bladder, esophageal, laryngeal, lung, oral, and throat cancers, chronic lung diseases, coronary heart and cardiovascular diseases, and sudden infant death syndrome.

Smoking also reduces overall health, contributing to conditions such as hip fractures, complications from diabetes, increased wound infections following surgery, and various reproductive problems.

Smoking cigarettes with lower machine-measured yields of tar and nicotine does not help.

Body Picture“There is no safe cigarette, whether it is called light, ultra-light, or any other name,” U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Richard Carmona commented. “The science is clear: the only way to avoid the health hazards of smoking is to quit completely or to never start smoking” (Health and Human Services, Press Release).

Statistics of Smoking Related Deaths

By current estimates, tobacco use causes 440,000 deaths per year and costs about $157 billion in health-related losses. An estimated 46,000 adults smoked in 2001. On average, men who smoke cut their lives short by 13.2 years, and female smokers lose 14.5 years. “Since the 1964 surgeon general’s report, more than 12 million people have died from smoking-related illness,” Dr. Carmona said.

“These include 4.1 million deaths from cancer, 5.5 million deaths from cardiovascular diseases, 2.1 million deaths from respiratory diseases, and 94,000 perinatal deaths. We’ve known for decades that smoking is bad for your health, but this [latest] report shows that it’s even worse than we knew. The toxins from cigarette smoke go everywhere the blood flows.”

Quitting smoking has immediate as well as long-term benefits, according to the surgeon general’s report. The heart rate drops towards normal and circulation improves. The risk of having a heart attack or stroke or of developing lung cancer diminishes. Even seniors who quit after many years can experience positive effects. A smoker who gives up the habit at the age of 65 reduces his or her risk of dying from a tobacco-related disease by half.

Learning More About Tobacco Use

The surgeon general’s report was based on a review of 1,600 articles. The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has made these available to the public online on a searchable database (Health Consequence of Smoking, CDC Database).

For online tips and advice about how to quit smoking, see Tobacco Information and Prevention, and the American Cancer Society Guide to Quitting Smoking.

The American Cancer Society Guide provides a smoking cessation plan, explains how to deal with withdrawal and cravings, and lists useful anti-tobacco groups.

(Health Consequences of Smoking, Surgeon General’s Report).

Source: http://www.braytonlaw.com/news/mednews/091004_tobacco_surgeong.htm, a web site sponsored by the law firm of Brayton Purcell for educational purposes.

And the Message Is…You Can Control Your Actions

Quit this nonsense!

Short and sweet, direct and straight to the point – just don’t light up.

Sounds concise huh?

It is as difficult or as simple as you want to make it.

You can take control of this habit.

Picture of Light BulbUse this knowledge to stop your previous actions and make that small change in behavior that gives you a big health advantage.

It is only as difficult as you want to make it out to be, so don’t baby yourself or rethink it over.

You have the control, now use this knowledge to not light up again.