I’m not too sure I am a stranger to the cool people I have met on here. I need to tell you how smokin’ awesome your words of encouragement have been. Did I just mention smokin’? Yes! Smokin’ in this context connotes a pleasant adjective. I’m quite sure my definition of adjective here is appealing. Except you’re told you are smoking nice, hot or awesome, then all other smoking could be bad. Don’t get me wrong, I do not condemn or dislike smoking or smokers because they smoke, I only do not like the fact that smokers, even after knowing the consequences of taking tobacco product like cigar (cigar is also the same as cigarette. One just made its way to the English dictionary before the other), marijuana and the likes still take interest in it. Also, I was very sad on learning that the second-hand smoke or passive smoke that comes from tobacco kills about a million people each year.
(Passive smoking is the process of inhaling smoke directly without being the smoker.)
As a tobacco user, you don’t only kill yourself; you endanger other people’s lives too. I am bewildered by those who take cigarette in the sunny part over here. I start by asking them ‘So, you mean you take cigarette for the fun of it? Uhh, that’s smokin’ ignorant! What you really do know about smoking is a minute percentage compared to what you do not know’. This topic is a must follow and I’m of the belief you can’t wait to get to the end of this amazing post. Quickly, I would like to acquaint you with some salient issues pertaining to the subject matter- SMOKING.
France has seen a sharp fall in the number of people smoking daily, with one million fewer lighting up from 2016-2017, a survey suggests.
Such a drop has not been seen in a decade, according to Public Health France, which carried out the study.
There has also been a decline in smoking among teenagers and those on low incomes.
The study pointed to the slew of anti-smoking measures introduced to France as a likely reason for the decline.
Recent years have seen neutral packaging, reimbursements for people using tobacco substitutes, higher cigarette pricing and campaigns like the national tobacco-free month.
It is rather sad that despite the increased death tolls in the population of smokers, many are still of the idea that, by smoking, they are not on the losing end. So first, let’s talk about some facts you really never knew about smoking
About half of tobacco users die from smoking, around 1 in 5 deaths in the U.S is caused by smoking and more than 120,000 people each year die from smoking-causing diseases.
Cigarette holds the record of the most-traded substance (around a trillion 1,000,000,000,000, the zeros are uncountable, right?)
On earth, cigarette butts constitute the most trash found and this is around 1.69 billion pounds of butts. (This is to show that the most bought and used material is the cigarette.)
Tobacco kills about 6 million of its users and roughly a million who inhale the second-hand smoke.
An estimate by CDC shows that the female smoker on average loses 14.5 years of her entire life while his male counterpart loses an average of 13.2 years of his entire life.
Pressure is placed on the immune system of a smoker, thereby making it work harder than a non-smoker.
You would find more than 4,000 chemicals (example includes toluene, arsenic, cyanide, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide) in a cigarette and 69 or more are carcinogenic.
Severe and chronic diseases like bronchitis, cancer, and pneumonia are attached to smoking.
What is smoking and how it started?
Smoking involves burning a particular substance for the purpose of tasting the smoke by breathing it in which end up in the bloodstream. The process the gas undergoes is diffusion into the pulmonary vein, which then moves to the heart and finally takes off to the brain. So short a process, isn’t it? Smoking is found everywhere, between the old and the young, and between male and female. By now, you may be asking what the difference is between tobacco and cigarette. Here is the difference for enlightening sake; tobacco (generic) is the tobacco plant in which the dried leaves are rolled into cylindrical papers to form cigarette while a cigarette is mainly derived from the tobacco plant. Smoking of cigarette occurs by lighting the end of the tobacco-rolled paper with a fire source.
Yes, let’s get down to some other things that can be smoked apart from tobacco plant (cigarette). Majority of the world smokers are attached to cigarette while a lesser amount goes for the likes of opium, heroin, and cannabis. Cannabis seems to be the second most smoked substance.
Smoking has a history as far back as 5000BC and it was used mainly for religious activities just like the perfume as I mentioned in my last post. The early people believed a lot of things which still baffles the present world. Part of which is how the early people thought smoking could enlighten them spiritually or even change their mind while divining. I have heard of musicians who smoke before they write their songs because of inspiration. This I don’t believe is needed or true.
The primary aim of smoking was to administer recreational drugs. Before the world started taking pleasure in smoking, it was done to make rituals and burn as incense. The process of smoking for drug purpose follows combustion of the substances while it becomes gas and fast-track itself to the lungs where it resumes in the bloodstream and mixes with blood tissues.
Smoking brings impairment to every part of the body from the seen hair to the unseen lungs and right down here is the critical issues outlined.
Stroke refers to a temporal blockage in the blood supply to the brain. When smokers smoke, they badly affect their arteries (a vessel that carries blood from the heart to the rest of the body). When the arteries do not function well by carrying the exact blood to the brain, it deprives the brain cell and they start to die. This finally leads to stroke. Stroke can also lead to many other deformities like altered brain function, paralysis, brain damage, and even death. Stroke is bad and it shouldn’t be experienced, this can only be if smokers can quit smoking.
Out of 100% lung cancer deaths, cigarette smoking causes more than 89% of these deaths. There is said to be cancer in the lung when the cells present mutate. Why do cells change? First, you need to know lung is an organ-medium that exchanges air. They, cells in the lung change when there is an intake of harmful and toxic substances. The cells are living as you may know and they understand their environment. The intake of these toxins comes primarily from smoking. Apart from smoking, exposure to harmful chemicals like radon also causes lung cancer.
The chronic obstructive pulmonary disease is another disease associated with the lungs. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) makes it difficult to breathe and it is majorly found in smokers. The effect of COPD is so bad it is better read than experienced. It first renders the body inactive and makes even the simple task difficult. There are tubes in the lung that divides into small sacs called alveoli and bronchioles where the exchange of oxygen is done. Normally in a healthy person, the sacs and tubes are elastic in order to expand or inflate when air comes in and decrease when we breathe out. So, in a COPD patient, the tubes and sac lose their elasticity property and this impairs the oxygen that flows in. This is called emphysema while chronic bronchitis is when there is a swelling in the tubes of the lungs and this ultimately restricts breathing.
Once the arteries are blocked from smoking by plaques, the heart finds it difficult to function. In blocking the arteries, this means the required oxygen and blood that flows to the heart are less compared to what it used to receive. Also, blood pressure is raised by smoking and it further weakens the walls of the blood vessels.
There are a lot of diseases still linked to smoking and they are as bad as those aforementioned. I’d like to further make mention of what makes the typical cigarette bad.
Cigarette contains a whole lot of substances from cyanide to tar and carbon monoxide (C02). CO2 is the gas you were warned against. Don’t forget, we breathe out carbon monoxide because it is harmful to us. This CO2 is what smokers take in instead of oxygen! CO2 finds a way of taking oxygen’s place in the blood by binding to the haemoglobin (a protein which function is to transfer oxygen from the lungs to the tissues in the body) and immediately make sure vital organs like the heart and the brain get starved of oxygen in which prevent them from functioning as supposed.
Another part of cigarette is nicotine. Nicotine is the addictive element in the cigar. The reason why people crave for more and more cigarette is because of the availability of nicotine. This negative element makes a fast response with the body. It calms and relaxes the individual taking it. It is like been used to electric power for different purposes and on it going off, you immediately get an alternative like solar or a generator to ensure power is restored. So also is nicotine, since it makes the smoker happier. I could say nicotine is the least negative but the strongest substance-force in the cigarette since it makes you want more.
The numbers of smokers keep declining, thanks to various campaigns that have been done and is still been done to curb smoking
Anti-smoking campaigns are prevalent now and it started featuring from the early 20's when the negative effects began to unveil. The government looked into smoking when the death tolls and chronic disease started to top the tables in health statistics. Why wasn’t it noticed before now? What took them so late? This could be due to many reasons, from taking a casual look at the matter or the gain they had annually was too much they pointed a blind eye at the risk. The campaigns and advertisements have really taken over in reaching people who wouldn’t listen to advise. This is at least coming from those who made cigarette like the famous ‘SMOKERS ARE LIABLE TO DIE YOUNG’.
Proper counseling and education is another intensive way to stop the use of tobacco. Most movies watched by teenagers and adolescents and also social factors depict smoking tobacco as normal. This has been rubbished by counselors who have properly guided smokers to a better self of themselves. Smoking normally appeals to the youths and they tend to try it out to prove their maturity. Trying to quit smoking here is easy, but outright abstinence is quite hard except which monitoring, counseling and educative measures are taken.
Please note that this is not to castigate smokers, they are human after all, and it is just to better inform the misinformed/uninformed about what they are currently going through. Also, it is to enlighten us on the risk attached to smoking, either through the ‘first-hand’ smoking or the second-hand smoking.
The best alternative to smoking could be by the use of vaporizers. Vaporizer churns down health risks of cancer, stroke and cardio diseases found in cigar. Since the main aim of the cigar is to pass drugs to the bloodstream, vaporizer uses hot air without combustion to pass in the substance. The E-cigarette has been around for a while too with the risks unknown. It is advisable to stay clear of the electronic cigar.
Using cigarette during winter or cold period isn’t ideal. Staying indoor or finding a better way to keep you outdoor is the only ideal solution to keeping warm. Be sure to pass the message to friends around. Help a life by saving them from the risks of smoking.
Lastly, to quit smoking, the effort must come from the smoker. You must be ready to quit and ensure you stay that way. Specialists can help also by prescribing medications like varenicline, nicotine replacement therapy (here smoking is stopped and nicotine intake gradually reduces in the bid to cut away the addiction) and behavioral changes.