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Smoking is a Dangerous Habit

Sep 6, 2008
Smoking is one of the most dangerous habits to pick up for a person and it is even more dangerous for people with asthma or heart problems. Smoking includes products filled with tobacco and is inhaled into the lungs through a cigarette, pipe, cigar or bongs. The most popular form of nicotine smoking today involves the cigarette. It is so popular that over one billion people across the world partake in smoking tobacco.

Smoking is a major health risk because it can cause heart attacks, lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and even cause birth defects of children born from women who smoked while pregnant. Smoking firsthand is not the only danger. Secondhand smoke has also led to the aforementioned conditions of people who do not smoke but are in the company of those who do smoke. The dangers of smoking and secondhand smoke have forced many cities and even states within the United States to create public smoking bans. Many bans have made it illegal to smoke in restaurants, bars, casinos and arenas, where smoking once was permitted inside the buildings.

Smoking has become such an important discussion because of its side effects that any advertisements promoting smoking, cigarettes, or tobacco products have been banned from television and magazines. The death rate in the United States from smoking has reached almost 500,000 deaths per year and some experts predict that 1/3 of Chinese men will have their lives shortened because of complications from smoking.

Smoking has been traced back to as early as 5,000 BC and once it was introduced to Americans it started to make appearances in art paintings across America and Europe. Figures in the paintings would be simply holding a lit cigarette or be smoking from it in the painting. Smoking also has made countless appearances in other areas of popular culture. Smoking is extremely prominent in films and literature. The most famous movie star smoker was Humphrey Bogart and the most famous literature character smoker was Sherlock Holmes.

It is estimated by doctors across the globe that people who smoke will live somewhere between 2.5 to 10 years less than non-smokers. Close to one-half of male smokers will die due to an illness from smoking. The main forms of cancer caused by smoking are lung, kidney, breast, larynx, bladder, esophagus and colorectal cancer.

Smoking is also linked to cardiovascular disease because several of the ingredients in the tobacco cause a narrowing of the blood vessels, which increases the likelihood of a blockage within the arteries, which in turn can cause a stroke or a heart attack. Smoking or chewing tobacco can also cause oral cancer while also deteriorating the teeth and the gums.
There are a variety of ways for smokers to quit their bad habit. Tobacco and nicotine are extremely addicting drugs that can be difficult to pull away from. Some ways of quitting smoking are using nicotine replacement therapies which include gum and the patch, hypnosis, quitting 'cold turkey' and acupuncture.

Smoking is a dangerous habit to employ, especially for people with pre-existing heart conditions or asthma, and smoking bans are a result of the effects from secondhand smoke. Despite the difficulty of breaking the bad habit it can be done and can be done in enough time to prolong life.
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