Long Term Effects Of Smoking
Smoking is one of the most addictive habits that a human can start doing. This of course means that it gets a lot harder to quit the longer you smoke. The difficulty that the long term smoker has in quitting has lead to a lot of research and new ways being found to kick the habit. But the thing is the longer that you smoke for, the greater impact and the changes that the smokers body will have. Unlike other recreational drugs the smokers body doesn't get used to smoking or become immune from the effects so as the saying goes every single cigarette you smoke is another nail in your coffin.
We probably all know someone who has smoked for years and doesn't seem to be any worse off for it. In fact a lot of smokers both short term smokers and longterm smokers always seem to know that one person. The thing is this is the exception and not the rule. Even though a smoker could still live to a good old age, their body will have signs of the effects of smoking. Not only that but they will generally have a poorer quality of life. What follows is not a exhaustive list of the effects of smoking, but some of the most common.
Long Term effects on the Respiratory System are particularly notable with smoking, and include:
- Tests and surveys have shown that the longer you smoke you have a far greater chance of getting lung cancer. Which if caught early enough has a 40-60% survival rate if it is caught in the very first stage. Of course this all depends on the type.
- A huge increase in the chances of developing emphysema. A severe condition of the lungs which causes a shortness of breath. This is caused by the airways and air pockets in the lungs collapsing or becoming damaged by the continuous smoking.
- Smokers have a large increase in the chances of developing chronic bronchitis.
- A smoker will find it more and more difficult to do even the most simple manual tasks. In some cases even walking up a flight of stairs can cause breathlessness in smokers.
- There is an increase in the incidences of coughs and respiratory infections in a smoker.
- It has been shown that a smoker has far greater chances of getting cancers of varying types.
Long Term effects on the Reproductive System include:
- A decrease in fertility.
- A decrease in the likely birth weight of a baby born to a smoker.
- An increase in the chances of miscarriages, complications at birth and complications in the baby’s development in the womb.
- A large increase in the chances of developing cervical cancer.
Long Term effects on the Digestive System include:
- Smokers have been shown to have a increased chance of getting stomach ulcers.
- Bad breath is always a issue for the smoker.
- Some recent research has shown that smokers have a much greater chance of having bowel problems.
- Increases in the chances of cancer of the mouth, oesophagus and pancreas.
Long Term Cosmetic effects include:
- Nioctine stained teeth.
- Nicotine stained fingers and nails.
- Wrinkling of the skin, so it appears aged prematurely.
- Unhealthy in appearance, sallow complexion.
Long Term effects on the Circulatory System include:
- As a smoker you stand a far greater chance of suffering from heart disease and other circulatory problems. In fact it has been shown that you are upto 5 times more likely to suffer a heart attack
- One of the reasons for this rise is that smoking cigarettes leaves deposits of fat and cholesterol on the blood vessels. This in time means that the vessels become thin and hardened. Which leads to lowering of the blood pressure over time. This leads to problems particularly on the organs which really depend on good blood flow the heart and the brain.
- This decrease in blood flow leads to a greater chance of peripheral vascular disease anongst other things.
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