Cigarettes – A Poison Stick Essay

All over the world, there are billions of people who smoke tobacco and unfortunately a large percentage is of Americans. I have chosen this topic because tobacco is one of the preventable causes of death. Time by time many of the officials around the world made their effort to reduce the effects of tobacco. Somewhere there is a ban on smoking in public places, in front of schools. In the following paper I will discuss how tobacco would affect our live and living. This paper will also include some statistics to support my discussion. Beside all things, we will also discuss an interesting story of a kid named Ardi Rizal. He is the one who smoke 40 cigarettes a day. This is very alarming situations, because government officials should take strong steps in order to prevent this. Smoking is such type of poison which infects not only the one who takes it but also infects those who are in surrounding. 

Discussion 

In Indonesia, a two year old boy is smoking 40 cigarettes a day and his health has been totally ruined. The four-stone toddler, Ardi Rizal, is far too unfit to run around with the other children and hence moves around in a toy truck. Though the local officials have offered to buy the Rizal family a new car if the boy quits smoking, this has yielded no fruits as his parents believe he is totally addicted now. The mother sadly confesses that the child gets angry, screams and batters his head against the wall saying he feels sick and dizzy on lacking a cigar. Interestingly, the father who is a fish monger has no problem with this although it costs the family $3.78 a day to support Rizal’s smoking. This is a worrying tread which has been supported by Central Statistics Agency which has shown that 25% of Indonesian children between the age of 3 and 15 years have tried cigarettes, with 3.2% of those becoming active smokers. Indonesia is consequently the world’s third largest tobacco consumer (Mail Foreign Service, 2010 pg 1)

Reality of Tobacco

Tobacco is simply a green leaf but it’s just like a chemical because its smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals in it. Forty of these chemicals are carcinogenic and eight of them a class A carcinogenic, which means they can kill you. Many people don't even realize what some of the chemicals are. Highly effected chemicals are Vinyl Chloride, Cadmium, Ethanol, Acetic Acid, Methanol, Hexamine, Naphthalene, Hydrogen Cyanide, Nicotine, Stearic Acid, Phenols and Stearic Acid (Boyle, p. 335-341). These are just a few of the 4,000 and more chemicals inside cigarette smoke. When people inhale these chemicals they don't see that they aren't the only people being affected by them. Their second hand smoke is a serious problem when around with other people. These people have no control over whether they should or shouldn't breathe in the substance lingering in the air.

Secondhand Smoke

Cigarette smoke can stay in the air for up to two hours. If a pregnant woman is exposed to the secondhand smoke, the nicotine she ingests affects her and is also passed on to her unborn child. Some other places where the second hand smoke might affect people would be in the work place or at restaurants. Not everybody wants to breathe in the smoke while they're eating at a fancy restaurant or when they're in their work environment. This secondhand smoke can also affect young infants. When a child is with their parents in a public place and someone is smoking near them, the smoke has a greater chance to affect the infant's body because their body is not fully developed yet. That child will be at more of a risk to becoming addicted to cigarettes because of the amount of nicotine they are inhaling. If we would prohibit cigarettes from some of the places, as in some countries where people were forbidden to smoke in public area, then that would help reduce the risk of others from being affected by its effects.

How Tobacco Affect our Lives

Pregnant Women

When a pregnant woman inhales the smoke it is transferred to her unborn baby. Before the child is born the woman has a higher chance of miscarriages, stillbirths, and also the risk of a sudden infant death (SIDS). If the woman gives birth to the child it will have an increased risk of low birth weight. The child will also have a great chance of being born with a decreased lung function which could be fatal. Pregnant woman are among the many people at risk from being affected by tobacco smoke.

Affected Public Place

People in the workplace, restaurants, bars and other public places are others who will be affected by cigarette smoke. Even though in restaurants they have smoking or non-smoking, people are still at risk from being harmed (Haustein & Groneberg, p. 78-82). The people who work at these places have to deal with it or quit their job. If an employee loves his or her job, he or she will have to make a sacrifice in order to keep his or her job, either their health or their job. This isn't fair to the employees and could possibly lead to a lawsuit with the company. If the company wants to avoid that situation they should resort to their employees needs, not the smoker's needs. The same thing goes for people in the workplace. Many people are being affected by secondhand smoke and they don't even know it.

Those people who know that there being affected want to put a stop to it. If people would stop smoking cigarettes in public, then other peoples' health would not be at risk from the harm.

Sickness from Tobacco

Respiration system

Tobacco increases the possibilities of getting lower respiratory tract infections, especially among children. Lower Respiratory infections are pneumonia and bronchitis. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that approx they records 175,000 cases of infants who are up to 18 months old gets lower respiratory tract infections (Verma, p. 34-41). Tobacco smoke also affects their lung function because upper respiratory tract irritates when children inhales smoke of tobacco. Significant numbers of children are suffering from asthmatic attacks. EPA reported approx 300,000 cases of asthmatic children per year and the major reason is only tobacco smoke (Verma, p. 34-41). Tobacco smoke is also the risk for developing asthmatic symptoms in children.

Lung Cancer

Only 13 to 14% cases of lung cancer are not due to tobacco smoke. In both women and men, lung cancer is major cause of deaths due to cancer. Fortunately more than 90% of lung cancers can be prevented but in 2003, 200,000 people died from lung cancer (Boyle, p. 335-341). The main reason of getting lung cancer is tobacco (www.health.nytimes.com) and it is very shocking news that there are a high percentage of smokers believe that tobacco will not harm them and people around them. Unfortunately when anyone stops smoking, he or she still has risk of getting lung cancer but fortunately this risk reduces as time passes.

Statistical data of Smoking

Every year we lose 4.9 million people worldwide, not from aids, homicides, drugs, or even auto accidents, but from smoking. Smoking kills more than all of those combined. In America alone we have 1,200 smoking fatalities in one day. This is why I am against smoking. An estimated 46.5 million adults in the United States smoke cigarettes, even though this single behavior will result in death, or disability for half of all regular users (Boyle, p. 335-341).

Above graph shows the statistics of 2005, this graph shows that our 41.2 percent of age group 21-25 is smoking. This is alarming situation because this age group has significance in many respects then other age group. There is also bad situation in age group 12-13, its percentage is much low then other age group but there must be 0 % there. There are also two age groups who should not smoke but approx. 35% of 18-20 and 26-29 are smoking. However there is also high and low percentage of smoking people in different age group. Above graph also indicates that approx. 10.7% people who are smoking between ages of 12-17. 

Research has proven that there are more then 250 harmful, toxic chemicals in tobacco smoke that can cause cancer in humans and animals. Smoking can cause chronic lung and heart disease; also can cause strokes, and cancer of the lungs, larynx, esophagus, mouth, and bladder. Pregnant women who smoke are more likely to give birth to low weight babies; also increases the babies risk dying from sudden Infant Death Syndrome. It's a proven fact that in 300,000 children rose by smoking parents or relatives suffer from respiratory tract infections (Boyle, p. 335-341). Based on long-term studies, more than 50% of deaths of continuing smokers will be attributable to smoking. Smoking attributed deaths of reformed smokers range approximately from 10% to 37%, depending on when they quit.

Conclusion

In the above paper, different type of statistics have been defined and all these statistics shows that approx one third of our population is at high risk of  lung cancer and other tobacco related diseases.  Tobacco also causes cancer of gangrene of legs and stroke, bladder, larynx, tongue, mouth, throat, esophagus and kidney. Smokers are also at risk for coronary artery disease.

The best solution for a smoker’s addiction is to quit cold turkey, put them down and doesn’t look back. That is easier said than done, that's why there are so many other options to make it a reality to quit. There are many different products on the market, and also certain types of support groups. Products such as a nicotine patches, and nicoderm chewing gum, are good examples of non-smoking aids. The nicotine patch is worn on the top part of the biceps, releasing small portions of nicotine to help with the cravings. With the nicoderm chewing gum it allows you to keep your mouth busy and decreases the want and need to smoke. Also now, we have step down programs, where you cut down daily on the amount of cigarettes, until you reach your goal of zero.