Long Term Effects of Smoking – Effects of Nicotine on the Body

Reviewed by: | Author: Manoja Kalakanti

Smoking is the last greatest addiction on planet earth that takes longer to quit and takes years of your life once you start doing it. The longer you smoke, the greater is the impact on your body and mind. It can damage the lungs and heart, worsen the symptoms of bronchitis, cause other psychotic symptoms and wheezing. As the saying goes every single cigarette you smoke is another nail in your coffin, unlike other drugs getting used to smoking weakens yours body’s ability to fight illness and other lung infections. Researchers proved that the nicotine, an addictive drug in tobacco causes smokers to continue and smokers do need enough nicotine over a day to satisfy their cravings.

long term effects of smoking

It was found that smokers do inhale 7,000 other chemicals in cigarette smoke. Tobacco smoke contains nearly 60 known cancer causing germs and harms every single organ in the body reducing the health. The most damaging components present in tobacco smoke are tar, carbon monoxide, free radicals, hydrogen cyanide, and radioactive compounds.

Long Term Effects of Smoking Cigarette

Some of the effects of smoking may happen straight away called short term affects and others take long time to occur and are generally referred to as long term effects. Here we notify you on some of the long terms effects of smoking.

On Circulatory System:

  • Drop in skin temperature due to the constriction of blood vessels in the skin.
  • Blood is more prone to clotting due to stickiness.
  • Increased risk in the heart ache and blood pressure due to the blockage of the blood supply.
  • There could be a possibility of building up of fatty acids on the artery walls leading to a condition called atherosclerosis which is caused by the damaging of lining of the arteries.smoking effects on Circulatory System
  • It also affects the amount of oxygen caused by the blood and reduces the blood flow to reach to extremities like fingers and toes. This may lead to peripheral vascular disease amongst the other things.
  • The chances of experiencing a heart attack in smokers are 5 times more likely than an average person who does not smoke.

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On Immune System:

  • Smoking results in more severe and long lasting illnesses in the long run.
  • It lowers the levels of protective antioxidants like Vitamin C in the blood.
  • Smokers are more at risk to develop ulcers, cancer, bronchitis, pneumonia, infertility, high blood pressure, parasite and other viral/bacterial/fungal infections.

smoking effects on Immune System

  • It depresses the body’s immune response which makes the smoker’s body more toxic that highly affects the liver making it to target for diseases as well.
  • Smokers may look older and develop wrinkles on their skin because of free radical formation.
  • However, there is a possibility of improving your immune system if you quit within 30 days.

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On Respiratory System:

  • The greatest damage is caused to the lung functions and breathlessness occurs due to swelling and narrowing of the lung airways and also excess mucus in the lung passages.
  • There is a huge increase in the chances of developing of emphysema a condition which causes a shortness of breath which is caused by air pockets and airways collapsing lungs due to continuous smoking.
  • It causes permanent damage to the air sacs of the lungs.
  • Higher risk of lung infection and other likely symptoms such as wheezing and coughing.

long effects of smoking respiratory System

  • It increases the chances of developing chronic bronchitis.
  • A smoker really finds it difficult to take up even the likely of simple manual tasks and there are the chances of causing breathlessness in smokers even when walking up a flight of stairs.
  • It causes impairment of lungs’ clearance system which builds up the poisonous substances that result in lung irritation and damage.
  • Irritation of the larynx (voice box) and trachea (windpipe).
  • Smokers have far more chances of getting various types of cancers.

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On Reproductive System:

In males:

  • It causes a great genetic damage to sperm and this is due to the toxins present in tobacco smoke such as nicotine, cadmium, and benzopyrene.
  • Smoking leads to impotence due to the effects of smoking on blood flow and damage to the blood vessels of the penis.
  • It lowers the sperm count and increases the percentage of deformed sperm.
  • Smoking can result in vasospasm, a condition where it causes temporary constriction of penile arteries which can also affect blood flow to penis.
  • Exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and cigar smoking affects the erectile dysfunction.

Reproductive System in men and women smokingIn females:

  • A decrease in fertility.
  • Irregularities in menstrual cycle, absence of menstruation and menstrual cramps.
  • A large increase in the chances of developing cervical cancer.
  • Increase in the chances of miscarriages, complications at birth time and also may affect the baby’s development in the womb.
  • It may affect the new born baby’s birth weight at the time of birth.
  • If the smoker is aged over 35 years it greatly increases the risk of stroke and heart attack and in taking an oral contraceptive pill.
  • Women who smoke may reach menopause one or two years earlier than non smoking women and may increase menopausal symptoms including hot flushes, sweats and insomnia.
  • Smoking can also increase the risk of vulva cancer in women.

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On Digestive System:

  • Smokers have been shown to have a increased risk of getting stomach ulcers.
  • Smokers have more chances of having bowel problems leading to Crohn’s disease a condition which leads to inflammatory bowel disease that causes irritation in the GI tract.
  • This disease typically causes pain and diarrhea and most often affects the lower part of small intestine.
  • People who smoke are more likely to develop colon polyps that are usually referred to as the growths on the inside surface of the colon or rectum. Some of the polyps are cancerous while some being non cancerous.

Digestive System smoking problems

  • Smoking increases the risk of pancreatitis, which is the inflammation of pancreas located behind the stomach and close to the duodenum.
  • Smoking may also increase the risk of developing gallstones in the gallbladder.
  • Smoking worsens the liver diseases such as primary biliary cirrhosis, a chronic disease that cleverly destroys the bile ducts in the liver and also nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a condition which builds up fat in the liver.

On Oral Health:

  • Smoking and other tobacco products can lead to tooth staining, gum disease which may increase the risk of tooth decay.
  • It may also lead to tooth loss, result in bad breath and more seriously mouth cancer.
  • Stating in teeth occurs due to the tar and nicotine present in tobacco and can make teeth yellow first and to brown after years of smoking.

oral issues with smoking

  • Smokers are more susceptible to infections such as periodontal disease and also seem to impair blood flow to the gums that affects wound healing.
  • Cigars, cigarettes and other smokeless tobacco products contains at least 28 chemicals that have been shown to increase the risk of oral cancer, throat cancer and esophagus.

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Diseases Caused By Long Term Smoking:

Despite of affecting several body parts here are some of the diseases smokers are susceptible to fall ill in the long course of time:

  • Causing cancer to various body organs such as lungs, nose, larynx, mouth, nasal sinus, oesophagus, pancreas, bone marrow, tongue, ovary, ureter, liver, bladder, kidney, bowel and stomach.
  • Some of the lung diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease that includes emphysema and bronchitis.
  • Poor blood circulation in hands and feet which can lead to gangrene and amputation in severe cases.
  • Increases the risk of heart strokes and attacks and other heart diseases like coronary heart disease.

Over 7,000 chemicals present in tobacco smoke are chemically active and can trigger any profound impact and fatal changes in the human body. You can help yourself by kicking back the nicotine habit by consulting the right pharmacist to get you on the better road of non- smoking.

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