The effects of cigarettes on our body
Nowadays, smoking problems became one of the most important problems in many nations. Smoking not only destroys the bodies of people who smoke, but also destroys the environments. Despite of these devastating effects of smoking cigarettes, more and more people are beginning to smoke and the age starting to smoke is becoming younger and younger every year. However, significant numbers of people continue to smoke cigarettes even after they learn about the effects of cigarettes. In most cases, they are not aware of the effects of the cigarettes because they wouldn’t feel the effects of cigarettes until years after their first smoke. However, more than 4,000 harmful ingredients of a cigarette are killing one who smokes slowly but definitely.
Almost every organs in human body are affected by the chemicals in the cigarettes one smoke. Let’s see what organs in human body are affected the most by smoking.
Starting at the top of the body, the first risk is cancer of the mouth. Smoking cigarettes also causes gum disease, tooth decay, and stinking breath. The teeth become yellow and breath starts to stink.
Because smoking produce bad effects to the ability of inhaling oxygen, smokers feel frequent headaches, which resulted from lack of oxygen in the body.
Moving down to the chest, smokes pass through the breathing tube, bronchi. While passing through the bronchi, the smokes, specifically hydrogen cyanide, attack the bronchi to make it difficult to work properly and to inflame the organs. As a result, smokers suffer from harsh coughing. Also, weakened bronchi are exposed to the danger of easy-infections. In addition, the probability of mucus secretion and cancer becomes much higher than that of nonsmokers.
At the chest, smoking has devastating effects on smoker’s heart. Nicothine, which is main source of the smokes that smoker inhales, raises blood pressure and makes blood clot more easily. Also carbon monoxide takes oxygen from the blood and helps cholesterol to pile up and stick to the blood vessels, and it becomes hard to be washed away. All of these effects add up to cause crucial damages to smoker’s heart and increase risk of heart attack. Also, bad blood circulation resulted from the accumulation of cholesterol increases the probability of strokes and loss of circulation in fingers and toes.
Down to the stomach, digestive organs are affected. The tars in smoke can cause cancer of the esophagus and throat. Smoking increases the amount of acids that are made in the stomach and leads it to the secretion, causing heartburn and ulcers. By followed reasons, the probability of pancreatic cancer of smokers becomes higher than that of nonsmokers. Moreover, carcinogens that are released from the urine can cause cancer in the urine where its presence keeps on causing harmful effects. Also, high blood pressure caused by smoking even brings damages to the kidney.
Besides the many effects of smoking cigarettes, which are visible or sensible after long time, there are some immediate effects occur on the body.
The first sensible occurrence is coughing. At the first time you are smoking, you would cough lots of times, and you would think you cough because it is the first time smoking, but actually the coughing continues as you keep smoking. Coughing is a natural occurrence from the body to get rid of the poisonous fumes that you inhale. It is the sound of lung protecting itself from poisonous effects of smoking.
Yellow teeth and yellow fingers are other visible occurrence. After smoking for so long, people would be aware of my yellow stained teeth. For evidence, lots of smokers try to smile with their mouth covered or closed to hide their yellow teeth. Even though they whiten their teeth, it would be go back to yellow color soon.
Thirdly, there is shortness of breath. When smokers play sports, they feel they get tired easily and can’t hold their breaths long enough. As the years go by they would find they always started coughing after any kind of physical exercise. Their lung capacity is reduced by smoking. They would find that they cannot hold their breath for very long. When they have to blow into a meter to test lung capacity, and they just know that their attempt will be well below average.
Fourthly, there are circulation problems. Smoking blocks arteries and reduces blood flow. Smokers would feel the cold, especially in my feet. Because the circulation system doesn’t work well, smokers would have much pain when the temperatures change suddenly. Smoking can also lead to varicose veins and impotence.
Fifthly, there is grey complexion. You can tell a heavy smoker from the way their skin looks. They look grey and paler than non smokers. Smoking makes your skin age quicker. You may not think this is a problem when you are young, but you will see the effects of cigarette smoking when you get older. You are starving your skin of essential nutrients.
Sixthly, there is lack of energy. Smokers wouldn’t think this is a problem. However, it would be clear that their energies were lacking a lot when they get old or they quit smoking. According to my father who smoked for 20 years and quitted smoking last year, he felt his body was balanced much better and didn’t get tired easily. He would wake up in the morning feeling completely awake.The reason is that when you smoke you are starving your body of oxygen, and this leads to a lack of energy.
Seventhly, there is dry mouth. Because many chemical ingredients in a cigarette interrupt salivary glands to work, mouth wouldn’t obtain enough saliva.
Eighthly, there are problems in taste and smell. When you smoke you gradually lose the ability to smell things properly and your taste buds don't work like they used to. You will smell of tobacco smoke if you smoke, but you can't tell.
Ninthly, there is dizzy spell. If smokers get out of the bath too quickly they would get funny bright lights in their head. It was a strange sensation, and it affects some them more than others. Most people will get dizzy spells if they sit upright quickly, but a smoker will feel even dizzier because they have less oxygen in their bodies.
Other than visible and sensible effects, there are also crucial effects happening inside of the body, where the effects might be sensible but not visible. Most significantly, there are immediate occurrences in the brain. To understand the chemical dependency of the smokers well, understandings in the behavioral problems and immediate and crucial effects of smoking on the smokers. The evidences of chemical dependency of smokers are easily observable in their behaviors and appearances.
The feeling of relief that smokers say they feel when they are smoking are actually the feeling that nonsmoker always feel. Smoking might take away the stresses from their lives and relieve their bodies, but it is only temporary phenomenon. Nonsmokers always have the feelings that smokers feel when they are smoking.
Moreover, smoking even affects brain chemistry. Smokers’ brain cells possess fewer dopamine receptors than nonsmokers’ brain cells do. Dopamine receptors are like lock and key in the brain. They locate outside of the cell and interact with molecules that fit into them. They play significant role in the brain by guarding and mediating the functions of the cell. For example, receptors unlock themselves when right molecules come along, but then, they lock themselves when wrong ones come; they set off the series of events to perform specific functions by this action. Smokers lack dopamine receptors, in specific, the receptors that control the addiction. Dopamine is ordinarily released naturally when certain actions, such as eating and drinking, are performed. There is a theory that proves that the nicotine that was absorbed by the smoking initially increases the amount of dopamine but subsequently decreases dopamine in function and number. The initial increase of dopamine brings smokers pleasure and mirth, however, it vanishes away as time goes on; it eventually leads to the addiction. Recent animal studies have shown that dopamine receptors may be altered in the early point of the smoking process. Habitual smoking continues to have effects on brain chemistry and thus causing even worse effects. The effects may be permanent and continuing to changing brain chemistry may even harm the cognitive functions such as memories and intelligences.
Other organs that have second most crucial effects are respiratory systems, which include from nose to sinuses down into the lung. Because they are connected and working together with each other, the crucial effects from smoking cigarettes affect them at the same time.
First, Bronchospasm, which is known as “airway irritability” or abnormal activity of the airways in the lung. Bronchospasm tightens the airways in the lung, and it leads to similar symptoms as asthma; smokers might not have asthma, but they would have similar effects as asthma. As this type of consequences happen to smokers, smoking becomes main source of a pain to them. It won’t make smokers feel relief anymore and it only will hurt the bodies of the smokers by making their bodies difficult to irritate the lungs so that they have hard time when they breathe.
Second, the lungs produce more mucus to trap the bad ingredients from the smoke. Cilia, which look like hairs, would work hard to coat the airways in the lung and remove the mucus; this is usual way to remove the mucus or harmful substances as well as coughing. However, smoking would harm the cilia and make it paralyze, allowing mucus to accumulate in the lung of the smoker. Also smoking affects goblet to increase the amount of the mucus.
Third, as I have stated above, coughing is the body’s natural response to clear irritants from the lungs. Without the help of cilia, a smoker is faced with the difficult task of clearing increased amounts of mucus with cough alone. As a result, chronic coughing would happen to the smoker as a defense against the harmful substances from the smokes. Smokers who are not coughing looks fine, but his or her body may be weaker than anyone else because it means that his or her body is not doing job well enough.
Forth, smoking decreases physical performance. Because smoking destroys the ability to inhale enough oxygen to the body, physical performances will be burdensome to the body of the smokers; oxygen delivery to the muscle will be not working well. Also, physical performance would result into increased mucus production and even more tightening airways in the lung. Smoking not only limits one’s present physical performances like sports, but also restricts future potential physical activities.
The cardiovascular system includes the heart and all of the blood vessels that carry blood to and from the organs. Blood vessels include arteries, veins, and capillaries, which are all connected and work in unison with the lungs to deliver oxygen to the brain, heart, and other vital organs.
Adverse lipid is a type of fat that produces energy of the body. This fat is beneficial to the human body and human body use this fat in a good form, called high density lipoproteins, or HDLs. There is also bad form of a fat, such as LDL (triglycerids and cholesterol). Most people contain both good and bad forms of fats in their bodies, however, smokers don’t. Because nicotine from the smoking increases the amount of LDLs, bad fat, and decreases the amount of HDLs, good fat. Resulting consequence of increased LDLs and decreased HDLs is extremely high probability of heart attack; LDLs narrows the blood vessels by sticking to the wall of the blood vessels, so that the ways that blood passes through becomes narrow and blood transporting to the body becomes slower and slower, and eventually stops. Thus, smokers are exposed to the extremely high risk of the heart attack and stroke.
Both heart rate and blood pressure are increased following after smoking as a result. As I stated above, smoking continues to narrow the blood vessels and it also means that blood pressure is increasing. There are two types of them – systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure. Systolic blood pressure is the highest arterial pressure reached during contraction of the heart. Diastolic blood pressure is the lowest pressure, found during the heart’s relaxation phase. Nicotine from the smoke increases blood pressure while narrowing blood vessels. Old male smokers have been found to have higher systolic blood pressure than nonsmoking men do. Higher blood pressure requires that the heart pump harder in order to overcome the opposing pressure in the arteries. This increased work, much like that related to increased heart rate, can wear out a heart faster. The higher pressure can also cause organ damage where blood is filtered, such as in the kidneys.
Besides the effects that I stated in over 10 pages, there are still more harmful effects of smoking cigarettes. They might not observable to your eyes, but it is certainly happening inside of your body.
I have been living with my father, who is a smoker, over 15 years. As I observed him every day, he looked older than other men who are nonsmokers and in his age. He always looked tired and easily got tired when he played sports with me. He himself even told me to never smoke because smoking is like drinking poison every day. However, he said he couldn’t quit smoking even though he knows that it is extremely harmful for his health. Recently, he quitted smoking finally, and I saw him having hard time and suffering from the seduction of the cigarettes. As my father said, smoking is like killing yourself by your own hands. Smokers suffer when both smoking cigarettes and quitting cigarettes.
Smoking policy has been managed by the government for a long time. However, there are still lots of smokers in the world, and the fact that smoking of young adults is increasing is making the situation even worse. I think the reason that smoking is not decreasing but increasing despite of government smoking policy is because smoking is very addicting. Therefore, I say that banning cigarettes in law is the only way to decrease the smoking, although it would be extremely harsh.