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Smoking Cigarettes and the Importance of Its Regulation

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Smoking Cigarettes and the Importance of Its Regulation

Doris. Zhang (200346980)

BMKT-Communication Essential

Pierre Dion

Wednesday, November 17, 2016

Georgian College

 

Smoking Cigarettes and the Importance of Its Regulation

        "Globally, an estimated 6.25 trillion cigarettes were smoked by people during the year 2012 compared with 4.96 trillion in 1980", an article for the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) reported. (Roberts, 2014). Recently, the number of smokers has been decreasing year by year as the trend of using E-cigarettes instead of real cigarettes spreads widely and many anti-smoking campaigns are taking place. In spite of this movement, the population continuing or starting to smoke outweighs the decrease in smokers. There are still a considerable number of smokers all over the world who suffer from smoking’s negative effects to their bodies and minds in their daily lives. Tobacco greatly affects not only physical and mental conditions but also the social norms of smokers.

        Cigarette smoke causes various kinds of physical problems. First, smoking is one of the biggest factors for the onset of certain illnesses, especially cancers such as, lung cancer which leads its patients facing a higher risk of death than from any other type of cancer. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), tobacco use is responsible for the emergence of around one-third of all cancers and 90 % of lung cancer (2012). There are other diseases, disorders, and syndromes associated with smoking including, heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, brain disease and even eyesight disorders. Second, life expectancy is shortened by tobacco use. As referred to in the first point of this paragraph, people who smoke cigarettes are more likely to get serious sicknesses compared to the average non-smoking person, therefore, in general, their life spans are inevitably shorter. It is said that non-smokers can live 10 years longer than smokers, and the longer people smoke, the shorter they live, (O'Connor, 2013) Every pack of cigarettes smoked has been calculated to take 28 minutes from a smoker’s lifetime (Brigham, 1998).  The World Health Organization (WHO) has sounded the alarm that "Tobacco-caused 100 million deaths in the 20th century. If current trends continue, it may cause one billion deaths in the 21st century."(2013). Third, cigarette smoke also makes it difficult for women to get pregnant. If they do succeed in getting pregnant, their babies may be born too early and/or less healthy. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) is the worst case scenario. Although it is well known that smoking during pregnancy may discourage an infant's growth, many women smokers seldom quit, as data reported by the 2010 Pregnancy Risk Assessment and Monitoring System (PRAMS) shows that approximately 10% of pregnant women smoke in their last three months of pregnancy (CDC, 2010), leading to unhealthy babies. They tend to be born with a lower birth weight and perhaps minus some body parts. Stillbirth can also result from the lack of sufficient oxygen, proper nutrition and from placenta issues. In short, smoking triggers numerous physical and health problems.

In addition, tobacco use can lead to mental illness. When discussing the relationships between smoking and psychological disorders and trauma, the withdrawal syndrome, that is, the cessation of smoking is a major factor because of nicotine, the main component and active ingredient in tobacco, stimulates the brain nerves which control feelings. Lack of nicotine will give rise to unstable emotional control without regular use. In the first place, cigarettes accelerate stress rather than mitigate it. A significant number of people have the habit of smoking in order to deal with stress in an uncomfortable environment. In fact, this is the first sign that these smokers will become short-term withdrawal casualties due to the fact that they will be forced by the rules to quit.  However, Parrott claims that tobacco doesn’t reduce stress in the true meaning of the word but increases it to a greater high than what the non- smokers actually experience. (1999). In the second place, anxiety is boosted by the smoking habit. A study discovered that psychiatric patients typically smoke twice as much as regular smokers. (Lasser et al, 2000). The statistic that the BBC uploaded to its website seems to confirm this statement in respect that 68 people who quit smoking relieved their anxiety level remarkably after six months (2013). In the third place, tobacco may lead to suicidal thoughts. Harvard University Professor, Ronald Kessler, and his colleagues investigated the link between tobacco and suicide. The study with 5,692 participants, suggests that “2.6% had seriously thought about committing suicide in the previous year, 0.7% had made a plan of how they would do it, and 0.5% had made an attempt.".In general, suicide rates found in people smoking was twice or three times more than the non-smokers (Foulds, n.d.). Plus, frequent smokers get more chances to think about or try committing suicide than those who smoke fewer cigarettes. (Foulds, n.d.). On the basis of these research papers, smoking would seem to have a direct cause and effect on the human body resulting in the possibility of emotional disturbance and psychological issues.

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