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Smoking Essay

734 words - 3 pages

Did you know that in the US the effects of smoking cause more deaths than HIV, illegal drugs, alcohol, motor vehicle injuries, suicides, and murders combined? Have you had someone in your family who has suffered or died from the effects of smoking. I know I have, and the previous fact makes those deaths all the more tragic when you realize how preventable the deadly illnesses that result from smoking really are. Avoiding smoking entirely, can literally be the difference between life and death. The detrimental effects of smoking to your health, the carcinogenic materials in cigarettes and that comprise the smoke byproduct, and the surprising negative impact on one’s appearance are compelling reasons to never engage in smoking.
Most people don’t realize how many poisons, toxic metals, and even radioactive material that are in and/or come from cigarettes and the cigarette smoke byproduct. For example, arsenic, found in rat poison, and the highly addictive, nicotine, are active ingredients in cigarettes along with its primary ingredient, tobacco. Both nicotine and arsenic are found in pesticides used in tobacco farming. The tar in cigarettes coats the lungs and disables the cilia in the lungs, making it difficult to breathe. Over time, some of these damaged cells become cancerous making smoking a leading factor to lung diseases.
While the ingredients of cigarettes are harmful, the cigarette smoke byproduct might be even worse. Carbon Monoxide, also found in car exhaust, is known to be life-threatening in sizable amounts. Cigarette smoke contains high levels of this gas. Hydrogen Cyanide, used to execute people in gas chambers during World War II, is another poisonous byproduct of cigarette smoke. Lead-210 and Polonium-210 (Radioactive toxic metals), as well as cadmium, ammonia, vinyl chloride, additional pesticides, TSNAs, benzene, and formaldehyde are other destructive byproducts of cigarettes. Each individual ingredient listed above is toxic in larger doses on its own; however, the cumulative effect, even in smaller amounts, can be lethal.
The number of illnesses that result from smoking is extensive. Smoking has detrimental effects on the circulatory system, lungs, and heart, causing coronary heart disease (the leading US death cause), lung cancer, and lung disease. ...

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