Health Consequences of Tobacco Smoking
Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of disease, disability and death in the United State and the world. The harmful effects of smoking extend far beyond the smoker exposure to secondhand smoke can cause serious diseases and death. Each year an estimated 126 million Americans and over 500 million people in the world are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke and almost 50 thousand nonsmokers die from disease caused by secondhand smoke exposure.
Effects of tobacco smoking to the brain cigarettes and other forms of tobacco, including cigars, pipe tobacco, snuff and chewing tobacco contain the addictive drug nicotine is readily absorbed in the bloodstream, when a tobacco product is chewed, inhaled or smoked. A typical smoker will take 10 pups on a cigarette over a period of 5 minutes that the cigarette is lit.
Thus, a person who smokes about 11/2 packs (30 cigarettes) daily gets 300 “lits” of nicotine each day (Luoto 1983)
Upon entering the bloodstream, nicotine immediately stimulates the adrenal glands to release the hormone epinephrine (adrenaline). Epinephrine stimulates the central nervous system and increases blood pressure, respiration and heart rate. Glucose is releases into the blood while nicotine suppresses insulin output from the pancreas, which means that smokers have chronically elevated blood sugar level.
Like cocaine, heroin and marijuana, nicotine increases level of neurotransmitter dopamine, which affects the brain pathways the controls reward and pleasure. For many tobacco users, long-term brain changes induced by continued nicotine exposure result in addiction, a condition of compulsive drug seeking and use, even in the face of negative consequences is one of the Health Consequences of Tobacco Smoking to them.
Studies suggest that additional compounds in tobacco smoke, such as acetaldehyde, may enhance nicotine’s effects on the brain. A number of studies indicate that adolescent are especially vulnerable to these effects and may be more likely than adults to develop an addiction to tobacco.
When an addiction user tries to quit, her or she experiences withdrawal symptoms including irritability attention difficulties, sleep disturbance, increased appetite and powerful craving for tobacco. Treatments can help smokers manage these symptoms and improve the likelihood of successfully quitting. (Gymm 1993)
Cigarette smoking accounts for about one-third of all cancers, including 90% of lung cancer cases. Smokeless tobacco (such as chewing tobacco and snuff) also increases the risk of cancer, especially oral cancers. In addiction to cancer, smoking causes lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema, and increases the risk of heart disease, including smoke, heart attack, vascular disease and aneurysm; smoking has also been linked to leukemia, cataracts and pneumonia. On average, adults who smoke die 14 years earlier than non smokers.