Health Risks of Smoking

Written by on June 8, 2012 in Health - No comments | Print this page


Health Risks of Smoking

Everyone knows there are many health risks of smoking. Smoking is bad for you and just as detrimental to those around you. The Surgeon General’s warning on cigarette packages is clear: “Smoking Causes Lung Cancer, Heart Disease, Emphysema, And May Complicate Pregnancy.” “Smoking By Pregnant Women May Result in Fetal Injury, Premature Birth, And Low Birth Weight.” Why is it, then, that people still smoke, pregnant women included?

Reasons People Smoke

According to The Psychology of Everyday Living by Ernest Dichter, the following are the reasons why people smoke:

  • Smoking is fun
  • Smoking is rewarding
  • Smoking is pleasurable
  • Smoking is a measurement of time
  • Smoking alleviates loneliness
  • Smoking is entertaining
  • Smoking aids thinking
  • Smoking encourages relaxation
  • Smoking eases tension and stress
  • Smoking gives a sense of satisfaction

Other reasons for smoking include the following:

  • Smoking sets a social standard
  • Smoking gives an impression of maturity
  • Smoking helps with weight management
  • Smoking is  “cool”
  • Smoking is inherited
  • Smoking is just a part of life
  • Smoking is a habit

Smoking Statistics in America

There seems to be an abundant of reasons why people smoke, but the reasons cannot justify the sad statistics of an affected culture. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 46 million Americans belong to the “smoking society”. Director of the Center, Dr. Thomas Friedman, calls smoking the #1 preventable death in the U.S., killing 1,000 Americans daily. More than half of U.S. children are affected by the toxins emitted by secondhand smoke. It has also been reported that approximately 80% of the infants dying of SIDS has been exposed to cigarette smoke.

In spite of these high statistics concerning cigarette smoking, more and more Americans are lighting up every year. Young people, especially, seem quick to put the torch to their own lives. What will it take for Americans to truly understand the health risks of smoking? Isn’t it horrifying enough to be attacked and killed by terrorists? Do we want to annihilate ourselves and our countrymen with a stick of tobacco?

What are your thoughts on the health risks of smoking? Feel free to share below.

Photo Credit: Osho at





About the Author

Loraine R. Dégraff

Loraine is a passionate health and wellness writer and is particularly interested in working with the body through diet and nutrition. She currently lives in Queens, NY with her husband and 5 children and would love to talk "health" with you. View all posts with Health Tips.