Smoking is a practice wherein tobacco leaves are burned and the smoke is either tasted or inhaled. Although the practice has been around for many centuries, it was only during the 1950’s that studies were being made linking smoking to cancer. It was also only in 1964 that studies came out that directly linked smoking to different forms of health problems and it was only in 1966 that producers put health warnings on their packs. The effects may not be felt immediately by most smokers but the long term consequences may be fatal. Here are some health and hygienic related problems faced by smokers.
Dry skin – the skin of smokers often appear pale and dry because smoking causes the blood vessels to restrict thereby preventing nutrients and oxygen from getting to the skin. It can also cause skin rashes like the psoriasis.
Bad smell – the smell of stale smoke is very hard to remove; it sticks to clothes, hair furniture and cars. Even after washing, some of the smell still remains. This also causes bad breath, as the smell also clings to the area of the mouth, worst, if halitosis is developed.
Healing time is reduced – as it restricts the blood vessel, nutrients and oxygen needed to heal injuries are not delivered to areas of the body that need healing. The production of collagen, which is needed by tendons and ligaments, are also reduced thereby making sports injuries heal slowly.
Impaired performance – when smokers are pitted against non-smokers, especially in sports, non-smokers have the advantage because of the physical effects of smoking like rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath and decreased circulation.
Higher risk of getting sick – studies revealed that smokers get sick more easily than non-smokers. They easily get colds, flu, bronchitis, pneumonia and asthma. Most teens make smoking a way to reduce their weight, they light up instead of eating; they often lack the nutrients and vitamins to fight off illnesses.
All forms of smoking are health hazards. To stop smoking is not easy, especially to those who have started at an early age. The first days of quitting are the hardest but do not give up. There are a number of groups that help people to stop smoking. There is nothing to lose for those who want to stop smoking, but there is a lot to gain. One will be able to save money, perform better in every task, live a healthier and longer life.