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Squashing ‘safety’ myths on alternate forms of tobacco

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Squashing ‘safety’ myths on alternate forms of tobacco

According to Cancer.net, although cigarette smoking is on the decline here in the U.S., different tobacco/nicotine products have been gaining popularity. This is partly because many alternative tobacco products—which come in various sizes, flavors, and forms—are marketed and often perceived as being relatively safe.

But, that couldn’t be further from the truth. We take a look at just how “safe” these forms, of tobacco consumption, really are.

E-CIGS

Electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigs) are battery-powered, cigarette-shaped devices in which a nicotine-based liquid is vaporized and inhaled, simulating smoking. The idea that e-cigs are safer than cigarettes is due to the fact that e-cigs do not contain many of the carcinogens found in traditional cigarettes. However, the nicotine-based liquid contained in e-cigs contains many toxic chemicals.

According to one analysis by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the tobacco solution used in e-cigarettes contains a toxic chemical found in antifreeze and several cancer-causing chemicals, such as nitrosamines.

The FDA and the World Health Organization (WHO) do not recommend the use of e-cigs for any purpose.

HOOKAH/WATERPIPES

According to the 2013 Monitoring the Future Survey 20 percent of twelfth graders have used hookah.

Hookahs, also called waterpipes, have been smoked in regions such as the Middle East, Asia, and Africa for more than four centuries. Small packets of the tobacco mixture burned in waterpipes are sold in a variety of flavors, such as apple, mint, and cappuccino.

This product has been misinterpreted as being safe because it’s thought that by having the smoke first pass through a small amount of water, it would be a less harmful method of inhaling tobacco.

According to Cancer.net, even though there is no proof that water can “filter” tobacco smoke and make it less harmful, this misperception still persists today.

Instead of being healthier, smoking hookahs, or waterpipes, can lead to:

·      Higher doses of the same toxins found in cigarettes

·      Spread of infectious disease (sharing pipes)

·      Nicotine addiction

·      Lung cancer

The addictive piece of nicotine

No matter what form it’s being used in, tobacco is heavily addictive. So, it’s better not to start in the first place.

A recent survey found that 70 percent of smokers say they want to quit and about half try to quit each year, but only four percent to seven percent succeed without help. This is because nicotine has a fast-acting effect on the brain.

To further drive home the point to keep you away from ANY form of tobacco product, here are some effects that you could face by smoking of any kind:

·      Decreased physical performance

·      Increased mucus production

·      Persistent cough

·      Increased heart rate/blood pressure

·      Constricted blood vessels

·      Gastrointestinal issues

·      Lung/heart disease

·      Periodontitis/gum disease

·      Stroke

·      Cancer of the lungs, larynx, esophagus, mouth, bladder, cervix, pancreas and kidneys

·      Bad breathe

·      Yellowed fingernails and teeth

·      Premature skin wrinkling

·      Higher every day stress levels

·      Cognitive dysfunction

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