For some smokers, inhaling cigarettes is similar to the “buzz” of drinking alcohol or taking mood stabilizers.
Cigarettes take the edge off and seem to put folks back on an even keel.
However, like alcohol and some prescription pills, cigarettes – specifically nicotine – are highly addictive. Soon, the need for one cigarette becomes intensified and people start smoking more.
As a person’s need increases, their overall health decreases.
“(They face) hypertension, coronary artery disease, cancer, COPD and more,” said Toyin Chigbundu, a respiratory therapist at Piedmont Newnan Hospital.
According to www.healthline.com, smoking also causes acclerated aging, wrinkled skin, stained and rotted teeth, yellow-colored fingers and fingernails, poor vision and a dulled sense of smell and taste.
Smokers face an increased risk of developing diabetes and blood clots.
For women, smoking can cause cervical cancer, infertility, early menopause and problems with pregnancies and newborns, according to healthline.com.
Men could face issues with erectile dysfunction.
Other problems caused by smoking include: an increase in anxiety and irritability, especially when a person misses a cigarette break, and a decreased appetite.
The good news is it is never too late to stop smoking.
Smokers will see some improvements in their health almost immediately, said Chigbundu.
“Blood pressure starts to improve within 20 minutes and a person’s lung function improves significantly,” she stated. “(People) will have a better appearance, changes in their hair and teeth color and an improved appetite.”
According to www.smokefreegov, a month after a person quits smoking, a large number of nicotine receptors in your brain will return to normal levels. This will help break the cycle of addiction.