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World No Tobacco Day 2024: 10 Long term effects of smoking

World No Tobacco Day 2024: 10 Long term effects of smoking

World No Tobacco Day 2024: 10 Long term effects of smoking


Mangalore Today News Network/NDTV

May 31, 2024: World No-Tobacco Day, observed annually on May 31, is a global initiative led by the World Health Organisation to raise awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco use and advocate for effective policies to reduce its consumption. The day serves as a reminder of the significant health risks associated with smoking, including heart disease, stroke, cancer, and respiratory illnesses. Smoking is detrimental to health, causing millions of deaths each year and imposing heavy burdens on healthcare systems.

 

Tobacco


This year’s theme for World No-Tobacco Day 2024 is ’Protecting Children from Tobacco Industry Interference’. You can engage in observing this day by learning about the detrimental effects of smoking. Read on as we share the long-term harm smoking can cause.

Smoking has numerous long-term negative effects on health:

1. Lung cancer

Carcinogenic compounds in tobacco smoke damage the DNA in lung cells. Repeated exposure leads to mutations and uncontrolled cell growth. Lung cancer is often fatal, with symptoms including coughing, chest pain, and weight loss, significantly reducing quality of life and survival rates.

2. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Smoke irritates the airways and destroys lung tissue, leading to chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Causes persistent cough, difficulty breathing, and frequent respiratory infections, severely limiting physical activity and quality of life.

3. Heart disease

Chemicals in tobacco smoke damage blood vessels, leading to atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), which reduces blood flow and oxygen supply to the heart. Increases risk of heart attacks, angina (chest pain), and heart failure, contributing to high mortality and morbidity rates.

4. Stroke

Smoking increases blood pressure and makes the blood more likely to clot, which can block blood flow to the brain. Leads to brain damage, resulting in paralysis, speech difficulties, cognitive impairments, and in severe cases, death.

5. Peripheral artery disease (PAD)

Nicotine and other chemicals damage the arteries supplying blood to the limbs, leading to reduced blood flow. Causes pain, numbness, and increased risk of infections in the limbs, potentially leading to amputations in severe cases.

6. Respiratory infections

Smoking impairs the immune system and damages the airways, making it easier for infections to take hold. Increases susceptibility to pneumonia, bronchitis, and other respiratory infections, leading to frequent illness and weakened overall health.

7. Reduced fertility

Chemicals in tobacco affect hormone levels and reproductive organs in both men and women. This leads to difficulties in conceiving, increased risk of miscarriage, and complications in pregnancy.

8. Type 2 diabetes

Smoking increases insulin resistance, making it harder for the body to regulate blood sugar levels.  Raises the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, which can lead to complications such as neuropathy, kidney disease, and vision problems.

9. Weakened immune system

Chemicals in tobacco smoke suppress immune function, reducing the body’s ability to fight off infections and diseases. Results in increased susceptibility to illnesses, slower recovery times, and higher risk of infections and diseases.

10. Gum disease and tooth loss

Smoking reduces blood flow to the gums and affects the attachment of bone and soft tissue to the teeth, promoting bacterial growth. This leads to periodontitis, causing swollen, bleeding gums, bad breath, and tooth loss, affecting nutrition and overall oral health.

These long-term effects of smoking collectively contribute to a significant decline in overall health, reducing life expectancy and diminishing quality of life.


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