Hello. I’m the KB . And I want to talk to you today about smoking effects. Now, I’m sure you’re all aware of the dangers of smoking effects. Now what smoking does, is it has a variety of chemicals in, so it has tar and it has nicotine. Nicotine is highly addictive, so you start to smoke, and you can’t give up because you’re hooked on the nicotine. The Tar then gets into the cells in the lungs and over the years damages those. And then some of those cells can change. They begin to multiply in an uncontrolled way and from Clumps of cancerous cells, or tumors, in the lungs.
It’s difficult to pick it up early because the symptoms are, people tend to have a cough, which is really quite common. Occasionally they’ll cough up blood but often that’s too late, so lung cancer’s a really difficult condition to treat. But what about some other conditions?
Well, perhaps one of the commonest is what we call chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.You probably know it as emphysema, and that’s what my granddad had. He smoked for years, picked it up in the First World War and wrecked his lungs. Emphysema basically causes holes in the lung and over the year the holes become bigger and bigger.
And the amount of exercise you can do becomes less and less until you can’t really get up from a chair and you are on home oxygen. What happens is that the bronchi and alveoli in your lungs become damaged. The lining of your bronchi become inflamed and produce lots of mucus that can block your airways, and the alveoli can also become damaged. All this means that less oxygen passes into your bloodstream making it more difficult for you to breathe its big smoking effect.
So that’s what we call COPD. The other one is heart disease. I’m sure you’re all aware of the significant effect that smoking effects on heart disease. And I think it’s interesting that when the smoking ban came in place, within nine months, the number of heart attacks fell considerably. So, clearly, smoking furs up the arteries. But that just doesn’t cause lung disease. Because it furs up the arteries in your legs as well. And that’s another common symptom.
In the medical world, we call it claudicating. To you it’s cramp. And when that’s due to smoking and the arteries fur up, that cramp comes on sooner and sooner and sooner. And then you go to the doctor’s, and they desperately try to put tubes in and unblock those arteries. Sometimes it’s successful, and people give up smoking this is a big smoking effect.
Smoking takes a long time to do damage to most people. But there is a help. You can seek advice from your doctor about help to give up smoking. There are many tried and tested strategies. But what we know works well is when you plan to give up smoking. So you tell all your family and your friends. You make an agreement with the doctor who may have put you in touch with a counselor.
And they support you with treatments such as nicotine patches. It’s not easy because you’re giving up something which is addictive. However, the benefits are immense. Giving up smoking reduces the incidence of the diseases I’ve described. But finally, there’s one other point because smoking doesn’t just affect you. It affects the people in your house, your spouse, your partner, your children and passive smoking is a really significant danger to health, particularly in children. And when I was AGP, the number of times I saw conditions in children such as asthma precipitated by smoking effects. The number of times I saw premature children.
With low birth weights because of smoking. Smoking has many other effects. So, if you’re a smoker, you can be helped to give up. Contact your doctor. There are really successful treatments that can help you. These are the realities of smoking effects,