Right from the time we are children, we hear that smoking is bad for health as it causes cancer. While many steer clear from smoking, the addictive substances present in tobacco and nicotine make it difficult for people to kick the habit. Smoking and chewing tobacco can both have devastating effects on our health. While everybody is aware that smoking can lead to cancer, there are many other ways tobacco affects our bodies and health. Let’s take a look at what tobacco use can do to a person’s body:
Smoking causes immediate and long-term changes in the body. It can increase an individual’s heart rate and blood pressure. More importantly, it damages the blood vessels, reduces blood flow from the heart and naturally, reduces the amount of oxygen the body’s tissue receives. Smokers are two to four times more likely to suffer from a heart attack than their peers. Smoking will also double a person’s risk of suffering a stroke. But smoking isn’t the only way tobacco gets consumed. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 1.9 million people die from tobacco-induced heart disease every year. That amounts to roughly 20% of worldwide deaths from coronary disease.
According to America’s Center for Disease Control (CDC), smoking leads to eight out of every ten Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) deaths. COPD includes various breathing conditions, such as asthma and chronic bronchitis. Teenagers and adolescents who smoke could damage their lung growth, which increases their risk of developing COPD in the future. Once COPD is detected, if the individual continues to smoke, it could worsen the lung damage. Despite knowing this, almost 39% of individuals diagnosed with COPD continue to smoke cigarettes.
Smoking and Diabetes
The chemicals present in cigarettes can affect the body’s ability to function normally. The same chemicals can cause inflammation across the body, which reduces the efficiency of the insulin the pancreas produces. Of course, this means that smokers are 30 to 40% more likely to develop Type II diabetes. Diet, exercise and lifestyle changes can help manage the condition. If left untreated, it could lead to further health complications like kidney failure and extensive nerve damage.
Tobacco contains nicotine, which slows down the body’s production of bone-forming cells. These crucial cells help bodies heal. The imbalance between what the body produces and what it requires could lower bone mass and density. So, smokers are more vulnerable to suffering from fractures and osteoporosis.
Cigarettes and tobacco wreak havoc on an individual’s body. It increases their chances of suffering from a health disorder in the future. Sadly, this means that smokers end up having to go without health insurance. Most health insurance companies will deny applicants who admit to smoking or may increase their premiums significantly.
If you currently consume tobacco in any form, you might face challenges while purchasing a health insurance policy. Luckily, there are ways you can still get the cover you need without breaking the bank. Many top health insurance companies in India provide plans specifically for smokers. Additionally, the best health insurance plans make allowances for individuals who are actively trying to change their lifestyle. You can join the Government of India’s tobacco cessation programme to begin your journey towards a tobacco-free life. To get started, you can give a missed call on 011 2290 1701 or visit the Quit Tobacco website to learn more.