4/24/2017

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Cigarettes And Other Products Made From Tobacco

Thousands of farmers grow tobacco as a source of income. This helps make tobacco a billion dollar industry that keeps growing with each new generation of smokers.

Due to the high concentrations of nicotine found in tobacco leaves, millions of people around the world have become addicted to products made from tobacco. These products include cigarettes, cigars, snuff, pipe tobacco, and chewing tobacco.

  • Nicotine is an oily, colorless, toxic alkaloid that, when smoked or chewed, is absorbed through millions of tiny air sacs located in the linings of the lungs, mouth, and nose and can be absorbed through the skin.

  • Nicotine quickly enters the bloodstream and makes its way to the brain.

  • Once in the brain, nicotine stimulates the adrenal glands to produce hormones known as adrenaline and causes the production of dopamine.

  • Dopamine are neurotransmitters in the brain that send out feelings of pleasure and relaxation.

  • Nicotine remains in the human body for no more than five or six hours.

Since the effects of nicotine lasts for short periods of time it is so addictive, the only way for most people to keep a nicotine high is to chain smoke or by the regular use of other products made from tobacco.

According to the American Heart Association:

Cigarettes, cigars, and pipe tobacco are made from dried tobacco leaves. Other substances are added for flavor and to make smoking more pleasant. The smoke from these products is a complex mixture of chemicals produced by the burning of tobacco and its additives.

Tobacco smoke is made up of more than 7,000 chemicals, including over 70 known to cause cancer (carcinogens). Some of the chemicals found in tobacco smoke include:

  • Nicotine (the addictive drug that produces the effect people are looking for and one of the harshest chemicals in tobacco smoke)

  • Cyanide

  • Benzene

  • Formaldehyde

  • Methanol (wood alcohol)

  • Acetylene (the fuel used in welding torches)

  • Ammonia

  • The poison gases carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide

  • Vinyl chloride

  • Ethylene oxide

  • Arsenic

  • Chromium

  • Cadmium

  • Nitrosamines

  • Polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons

Many of these substances cause cancer. Some cause heart and lung diseases, too. All of these products can be deadly.

Cigarettes and other products made from tobacco leaves are known to have a direct link to nearly a half million deaths in the United States each year and millions more worldwide. Most of the deaths are caused by cancer and respiratory and cardiovascular disease such as heart attacks and stokes. There are other diseases associated with the use of tobacco.

The statistics are staggering when compared to premature deaths each year from other causes because tobacco products surpass all the other leading causes of premature deaths combined including war, motor vehicle accidents, gun violence, drug and alcohol abuse, and deaths from AIDs and other HIV related illnesses.

Although there is no way of telling how soon after a person starts smoking or using tobacco products if cancer or heart disease is going to set in, based on many years of research, it is a fact that the longer you smoke, the more likely you are to suffer from short and long term illnesses.

Cancer can occur in most parts of the human body and there are many parts of the body that tobacco based products make highly susceptible to cancer such as the lungs, throat, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, brain, tongue, tonsils, liver, kidneys, colon, cervix, rectum, trachea, blood, and the bladder.

Smoking has a negative effect on the eyes, skin, teeth, gums, bones, joints, and many other parts of the body. Smokers risk suffering greatly and dying prematurely when, in many cases, all it takes to prevent these diseases is to quit.

The nicotine in cigarettes can also be harmful to unborn babies. Children born to mothers who smoke, or if the mother inhales second hand smoke, may be born with birth defects and maladies that may effect them later in life such as hypertension, behavioral problems, type 2 diabetes, infertility, and obesity.

Since cigarettes and other products made from tobacco leaves are legal to sell almost everywhere in the world, it is no wonder that children start smoking at a young age and keep smoking into adulthood. They often pick up the habit from their parents, older siblings, their peers, and neighbors.

Although laws require identification checks for the sale of cigarettes to minors, it is still easy for minors to get their hands on them. It's as simple as taking a few from the pack that mom or dad has lying on the coffee table.

Children who smoke, or are exposed to second hand smoke, make face a lifetime of nicotine addiction as well as long term medical problems such as heart disease, arteriosclerosis, coughing, reduced lung function and respiratory infections, including pneumonia and bronchitis.

Many illnesses and deaths caused by the use of tobacco products are preventable. The best way to prevent smoking related diseases is not to start smoking in the first place or if you are already a smoker, you should quit as soon as possible.

A person who tries to quit using tobacco products must understand that it may not be easy and it make take a while to get over a nicotine addiction. There will be withdrawal symptoms such as irritability, cravings for tobacco, sleep apnea, difficulty paying attention, and other problems.

 

 

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