If you’re a cigarette smoker, it’s not anything new to hear that smoking is bad for you. The general knowledge that smoking is bad for you is widely talked about, but that isn’t enough to keep millions of people from smoking around the globe. Researchers have learned a lot about how smoking affects certain areas of the body after decades of in-depth research. If you’re looking for some motivation to quit, learning details about how smoking impacts your respiratory system might be just the push you’ve been needing!

AFC Urgent Care Norwalk cares about our communities. That is why our providers can recommend information and other resources to all patients looking to improve their health. Visit us today to take control of your health. 

Lung Cancer

The more than 7,000 chemicals that are released when a cigarette is burned are breathed directly into your lungs. That puts you at a significantly increased risk of lung cancer compared to non-smokers. You’re also at a higher risk of cancer throughout your respiratory system, including your mouth, throat, and sinuses.

Chronic Lung Conditions

Chronic lung conditions make it harder to get through daily life and can be extremely uncomfortable. Smoking increases the risk for chronic lung conditions, including bronchitis and emphysema.

Chronic bronchitis is caused by inflammation in the large airways, also called the bronchi. Bronchitis is accompanied by a persistent cough, and coughing up mucus is common. Emphysema is a condition that affects the air sacs in your lungs. People with emphysema get short of breath easily, cough frequently, and are more likely to experience heart problems.

Chronic lung conditions make it difficult to sleep, have an increased likelihood of weight gain, and are linked to depression.

Effects of Second-Hand Smoke

Second-hand smoke affects the people you smoke around that do not smoke themselves, including young children. Second-hand smoke is extremely dangerous. It’s been linked to over 7,000 lung cancer deaths each year and an increased risk of SIDS in infants. In the short term, people who are around second-hand smoke may experience throat irritation and coughing.

Tips to Quit

Quitting smoking after developing a strong habit is no small task. It’s hard physically, mentally, and emotionally. If you’re thinking about quitting, you should speak with a provider at AFC Urgent Care Norwalk. There are support groups for people looking to quit, as well as medications that can be used to ease the effects of nicotine withdrawal. Try to limit the stress in your life during this time, and remember that quitting is a lifelong commitment.