Taken from http://quit-smoking-help.com/smokingbad.htm
I can quit whenever I want. Itís not a habit. I just smoke to stay social. Sound familiar? Many smokers do not comprehend the implications of what smoking does to them and to those around them. Studies have conclusively shown that not only are cigarettes addictive, but they cause cancer. Period. There are no ifs, ands, or buts to this statement. We arenít just talking about lung cancer, but also cancer of the mouth, throat, bladder, pancreas, and kidney. There are over 4,000 chemicals in cigarettes including nicotine, arsenic, ammonia, carbon monoxide, and formaldehyde. Everyday smokers light up and partake in the bounty of chemicals and poisons that are known to kill. Smoking is the leading preventable cause of death in the U.S. and over 400,000 Americans die each year from tobacco-related causes. According to the American Lung Association, one in four smokers die prematurely because of their smoking habit. Smoking also costs the U.S. at least $97.2 billion yearly in health care costs and lost productivity.
The most popular of all of the poisons found in cigarettes is nicotine. This is the addictive substance that causes people to continue this deadly habit. Every time you inhale cigarette smoke, trace amounts of chemicals travel through blood, to your brain, and other parts of your body. In addition to cancer, these chemicals can cause chronic bronchitis, pneumonia, emphysema, vascular disease, heart disease, stroke, head and neck tumors, and decaying oral health. Thatís right Ė smoking makes your breath smell bad, stains your teeth, and smokers get cavities three times more than non-smokers. Forget about looking good. Youíll get more wrinkles from smoking, your hormone levels will be lowered, and youíll smell bad. When you catch a cold, it will last longer and thatís right, youíll smell bad.
Even if you disregard the obvious medical risk associated with smoking, you cannot dismiss the effects of smoking on others. Secondhand smoke, the smoke from other peopleís cigarettes, can harm the health of those that arenít smokers. This is true of smoking in public places or at home around family members. Secondhand smoke can also cause cancer and heart disease in adults. For children, secondhand smoke increases the risk of developing reactive airway disease, also known as asthma. In addition, between one-half and one million asthmatic children have their condition worsened by exposure to secondhand smoke. The effects of cigarettes on the fetus in the womb are alarming. Cigarette smoking during pregnancy can cause up to 14% of all pre-term deliveries, approximately 20-30% of low birth weight babies, breathing problems, and up to 10% of fatal illness among infants.
The risks of smoking during pregnancy have been well documented. A smoking mother inhales nicotine and carbon monoxide from her cigarette, which is then transferred to her baby through the placenta. This prevents the fetus from getting necessary nutrients and oxygen needed to grow. After the baby is born, if the mother breastfeeds, nicotine continues to get into the infant through breast milk as well as the air that the baby breathes. Simply reducing frequency of smoking may not benefit the baby as the mother may inhale more or take deeper puffs, thereby achieving the same amount of nicotine as before. Therefore, the best way to protect the unborn child is to quit smoking entirely. One should quit smoking prior to conception, if at all possible, or at least during the first trimester of pregnancy to lower the childís risks due to smoking.
Now, my personal view : I think most people smoke because they don't know how is it like if you are hit with cancer or heart disease. They don't know wat pain is. It is like when you are a kid, you run and jump or dash like no tomorrow but when you fall down and hurt yourself seriously, you will be careful next time. It is like a dog bite you for nothing, you will avoid a dog or afraid of dog next time.
I was once a heavy smoker, for 10 years. But I quited recently due to tonsillitis, I was not able to eat or drink for 2 weeks ! Imagine you feel like someone cutting your throat with a penknife when you drink or eat. That feeling sucks.
I advice for those heavy smoker, please at least try to quit, I know it wasn't easy, it sounds like impossible but at least try. To learn how to quit, click on the link I provided above.
Hope this help.