There is a mounting ban on the advertisement of cigarettes by governments all over the world. Furthermore, most of these governments have placed stricter legislations such as where an individual should smoke and also how tobacco products are to be marketed and sold to the public. These measures have been put in place because it has been established through research that smoking does have severe health problems to the smokers and secondary smokers. Today, it is very common to have more and more individuals trying to stop smoking after years of doing so because they have come to realize the risks involved in this activity. Moreover, manufacturers are now trying to come up with more creative and fewer harmful ways of smoking tobacco products.
What is Smoking?
In simple terms, smoking is all about inhaling and exhaling fumes produced by burning tobacco. This can be fumes from a cigar, cigarette or a pipe. Smoking is a traditional activity that has been used for medicinal and also leisure purposes. It involves the use of tobacco that contains nicotine. This is the one ingredient of tobacco that makes smoking quite addictive. Once your body becomes used to nicotine, you will constantly need it to feel normal.
In addition to nicotine cigarettes and tobacco products also have other ingredients. These include carbon monoxide, ammonia, prussic acid, tar and acrolein. It also contains a number of aldehydes. All of these substances are very harmful to your health.
What Happens When You Smoke?
It is important to note that people often start smoking for various reasons. For some it may be because they live with family members who smoke. To another it may be because it seems cool to smoke. However, whatever the reasons for your smoking, it soon becomes an addictive habit even if you had no intention of or did not expect to become addicted.
There are several effects that happen to your body when you smoke. For the most part, it is these sensations that make you want to smoke more often. It is also why you may start smoking and eventually find it hard to quit smoking.
- Smoking helps you relax – Smoking often gives you an excuse to stop working for a few minutes or even linger a little longer after a meal.
- Smoking helps you think – Smoking has a shut screen that helps you shut out distraction and concentrate. It is also can stimulate mental alertness.
- Smoking acts a time indicator – Smoking cigarettes measures time as well as make time pass rapidly.
- Smoking provides oral pleasure – Smoking has a sensual thrill that all smokers feel each time they puff at a cigarette.
These are just the effects smoking creates in your mind each time you smoke a cigarette. However, smoking causes a lot of health issues. There has been a lot of research done on the effects of tobacco that connect smoking to problems like lung cancer, cancer of the mouth and esophagus, heart disease, stroke and cardiovascular diseases.
It is due to these health problems that smoking poses to both smokers and secondary smokes that there has been a public outcry and movements to prevent smoking in public places.
Symptoms of Smoking
There are very many reasons why smokers are today being encouraged to stop smoking. Apart from the fact that smoking can cause lung cancer and heart problems it also affects:
- Fertility – It affects the sexual performance of both men and women. In women, there is a high likelihood of increased health risks of smoking if it is done by a woman using hormone based birth control methods.
- Bad breath – It is possible to develop halitosis or chronic bad breath.
- Bad skin – Smoking often narrows the blood vessels preventing nutrients and oxygen being supplied efficiently throughout the body. Therefore, the skin becomes pale and even looks unhealthy. It can also cause skin rash.
- Reduces body immunity – Smokers tend to eat less therefore they do not have enough nutrients in their body to fight off certain diseases. Furthermore, smoking increases the occurrence of pneumonia, flu, colds and asthma.
- Increases risk to injury and slow healing – Smoking affects your body from producing collagen this makes it impossible for injuries to heal quickly.
Most of these conditions are caused by the fact that smoking:
- Speeds up your heart beat to even 20 beats per minute.
- Your blood vessels constrict and your blood pressure goes up.
- Your skin temperature drops since blood is rushing to your heart.
- Your blood sugar drops as it is quickly used up as your body reacts to the stressed condition you put it through.
- Your appetite falls because smoking affects the hypothalamus which regulates your hunger
Over time all these effects lead to the various serious conditions caused by smoking. It does not matter whether you smoke fewer cigarettes, or you are a chain smoker. The only difference is that the chain smoker gets to feel the effects much earlier than if you smoked less.
How to Quit Smoking
There are very many ways that have been proposed over the years by many individuals. Some of these have been solutions filed by researchers and others are by smokers who have managed to quit smoking. The only thing that you should know when trying to quit this habit is that it is a personal decision. Although you may want to stop smoking to please your spouse or family members, you first have to accept you have a problem. Only then can you be ready to seek a solution out of it. The main problems you will experience as you try to quit are the withdrawal effects.
It is best to try to stop smoking by first decreasing the amount of cigarettes that you smoke in a day. This way, you will be slowly conditioning your body. Additionally, this will reduce the withdrawal effects of smoking. For the most part, your body will act in this manner as it will feel deprived and confused. For this reason, you will experience cases of:
- Low levels of blood sugar.
- Sweet tooth.
- Weight gain.
If you can find a way to overcome all these withdrawal effects, there is a high chance of you getting control over your life once more. You should not worry about these side effects as they are only temporary and once your body gains a normality, they will become bearable and even subside. Furthermore, the earlier you quit smoking the better for you since you will have an opportunity to:
- Reduce your blood pressure and have it come back to normal.
- Improve the oxygen levels in your body.
- Have your sense of smell return to you.
- Reduce your chance of getting a heart attack.
- Improve your lung capacity and reduce breathing problems.
Overall the best effect of stopping this habit is that you will increase your morale. Furthermore, you will feel good for having accomplished what you set out to do.
Home Remedies for Smoking
Remember, you should always consult with your physician in order to get a proper diagnosis and before trying to incorporate these home remedies and herbal remedies yourself! Here are some of the home remedies that you can try. There are medications that you can take to help you stop the effects of smoking. However, it is also possible to manage with home remedies that are easy to find and may be even more fun. For the most part, you will have to:
- Try This– Change your lifestyle by staying away from cigarettes.
- Eat healthy.
- Activities– Take up activities that will exercise your body and keep your mind occupied.
- Support– Encourage the support of loved ones and family members.
- Activities– Find activities to do, especially when you feel irritable and need a smoke.
- Support Group– Join a support group to help you cope with the side effects of smoking and to gain support.
- Coltsfoot and Mullein– Coltsfoot and mullein are some of the most effective herbal remedies for smoking that you can go for. They are mucous thinning cures that you should always pick and try. They work in a simple process whereby they, tone the lungs and soothe the inflamed body tissues and help loosen secretions.
- Skullcap– Skullcap is the other herbal cure for smoking that you can incorporate in your treatment program. It is effective for use largely because; it helps ease anxiety that is caused by quitting smoking due to the excessive nicotine that you have been consuming.
- Lobelia– As you try to quit smoking, there is likelihood that you will start coughing and this is when you need to get the lobelia herb and it eases coughing and soothes the bronchial tract. This herb also acts as the binding action on the nicotine receptor sites and so it helps reduce cravings for nicotine.
- Valerian Root– Valerian root is another essential herbal remedy for smoking that you should choose. You need to consume the root as it helps relax the tense muscle as you quit smoking. If you have sleeping disorders like insomnia you can also use it has it reduces their effects.
- Turmeric– Turmeric is another widely recognized herbal remedy for smoking and it is also a commonly used spice for Indian food. It is helps get rid of carcinogens that are left while smoking. You just need to add it to your meals a number of times a day and you will take care of the effects of smoking.
- Passion Flower– Lastly, passion flower is the other recommended herbal remedy for smoking. You just need to prepare tea and add the herb during the day or night to relieve tension that is experience as you quit smoking.
Diet for Smoking
Your diet may be the main healing factor that you have. If you know how to manage it well you could be on the fast track to a successful outcome. Make sure your food is rich in:
- Antioxidants – take fruits and foods that have antioxidants to help protect your vital organs like the lungs and heart and also to increase oxygen to the brain. It is possible to get supplements that can provide these antioxidants.
- Grape seed – Taking foods with grape seed extract can increase the repair to your lungs.
- Foods rich in vitamin C, A, E- You can either take foods that have this vitamin or you can take vitamin C supplements. Vitamin A will help repair the mucus membrane damaged by smoking. Vitamin E foods provide antioxidant properties your body can use to repair any damaged cells.
- Ginger and Lobelia – nausea is common as you try to quit smoking. Taking these products helps you shed toxins from the body by making you perspire. Lobelia also reduced withdrawal symptoms like irritability and poor concentration.
- Oats- It helps reduce tobacco cravings even in individuals who have no desire to quit.
Prevention of Smoking
Like any other addiction, it is possible to have a relapse to smoking if you are not careful. For the most part, the addiction will often pull you have even a single puff. For this reason, it is good to take measures to prevent yourself from falling back to the habit. This is especially true if you are still trying to quit. What you need to do is to:
- Quit smoking a cigarette at a time so that you body can adjust itself to these lack of nicotine.
- Join a support group, which will provide you with ideas on how to stop smoking completely.
- Find foods that you can supplement for your craving for tobacco.
- Celebrate each achievement you make to stop smoking.
Smoking is an addictive habit that is very hard to stop. However, once you have made up your mind, there are various ways you can use to help yourself stop the habit. The secret is to find what appeals to you and keep at it. By stopping this habit you will improve your life and keep those around you safe.
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