The Effects Of Smoking Essay Research Paper

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The Effects Of Smoking Essay, Research Paper The health effects of cigarette smoking are vast and well documented. In fact, over 75,000 reports have examined the connection between cigarette smoking and its effects (U.S. DHHS “Reducing Health”). A Report to the Surgeon General has stated that ‘It is safe to say that smoking represents the most extensively documented cause of disease ever investigated in the history of biomedical research (U.S. DHHS “The Health”). And a 1988 Report to the Surgeon General stated that nicotine (the drug found in tobacco) is as addictive as heroin and cocaine (American Lung Association, Pg. 2). The effects of smoking have been observed for a very long time. As early as the 1920’s, research identified nicotine as being extremely

poisonous, and tobacco use was linked with a variety of illnesses (Walker R. Pg. 7). During the 1920’s and 1930’s, increases in the number of patients with lung cancer were recorded by hospital staff (Yale Journal, Pg. 146). Medical research finally discovered a link between smoking and lung cancer in 1950 (Br Medical Journal “Smoking” Pg. 83). In the years since, smoking has been linked to a number of other diseases that can cause many years of illness and death. Each year more people die from smoking related diseases than AIDS, Drug abuse, car accidents and homicide combined, and costs the nation $65 billion dollars per year in health care costs and lost productivity (American Lung Association Pg. 1). Smoking only one cigarette has an immediate effect on the body.

Although a smoker might feel relaxed when having a cigarette, the nicotine in cigarettes actually increases the heart rate and makes the blood pressure rise. Nicotine also tightens the blood vessels. This slows down blood flow to the skin, and it’s temperature drops. Nicotine also stimulates, then reduces, brain activity, and affects food digestion (U.S. DHHS “The Health”). People who are new to smoking often feel sick or dizzy when they smoke. This is their body’s way of responding to the effects of nicotine. When you add to this the carbon monoxide that enters the blood stream with cigarette smoke, it takes the place of vital oxygen that is needed by the muscles and organs (U.S. DHHS “The Health”). This means that the body is not able to perform to the best of its

capacity. Chemicals in tobacco smoke harm the airways and lungs, damaging the lung’s ability to clean themselves, and making the smoker more open to coughs and chest infection (U.S. DHHS “The Health”). Teenage smokers cough more than teenagers who do not smoke, and by the time they become adults, many young smokers will already have abnormal changes in the cells lining their small airways (Center for Disease Control, Pg. 16). Teenage smokers also have more asthma and allergic symptoms than non-smokers of the same age, and get more easily winded when exercising (Center for Disease Control, Pg. 16). As you can now see, smoking effects many parts of the body. Just one cigarette dose make a difference, and even young smokers show signs of damage due to smoking. When people

become regular users of tobacco, they can find it very difficult to stop. Starting smoking when young, and smoking for a very long time, makes it more likely that a smoking related disease will develop (U.S. DHHS “The Health”). Approximately one in two smokers will die from a smoking related illness (Br. Medical Journal “ Mortality” Pg. 3). Smoking leads to a wide range of diseases, including heart disease and stroke, a number of different kinds of cancer, and chest and lung illnesses. Stomach ulcers have also been found to be caused by smoking. Smoking also affects an unborn child and fertility of men and women. Cigarette smoking is a major cause of heart and blood vessel disease. Smoking affects the working of the body’s blood supply in a number of ways. It helps to