What are the Risks of Smoking & How does it damage your Lungs?

Dec 16, 2022 by Adhip

Every single part of the body is at risk due to smoking and the general health of smokers decreases too. The lungs are damaged, the heart is harmed, the organ functions decrease and there will likely be an increase in the risk of death from cancer or heart disease.

The process of burning tobacco produces over 4,000 chemicals, including nicotine, carbon monoxide, and tar. These chemicals can otherwise transform normal cells into cancer cells.

What are the Effects of Smoking on Your Lungs and Airways?

Smoking can lead to sudden changes in your lungs and airways, like the common cold or pneumonia. More slow-developing changes can happen over time, like emphysema.

Wondering what happens and what are the risks when you are smoking or breathe in secondhand smoke? Let’s find out

More mucus and infections

You may have heard that smoking cigarettes negatively affects the cells in your body. There’s truth to this – but those cells grow in size when you smoke. More cells mean more mucus is made, leading to an increase in volume and thickness.

When your lungs can’t reliably clear mucus, it builds up around your airways and air exchange becomes impaired. It’s also more susceptible to infection

Smoking fast ages your lungs & prevents them from protecting you against infection.

Less airflow

Smoking causes an extreme level of irritation in the lungs. A smoker may struggle to breathe and eventually cough even if they only smoke for a short period of time.

Smoking can directly risk diminished lung function, which will compromise your ability to breathe and enact a variety of bodily functions.

Fewer cilia

The lungs have hair in them to sweep throughout and clean the lungs like brooms.

After lighting up just one cigarette, cigalikes inhibit your cilia and make it more difficult to breathe. Smoking can also impair the natural filtration process of your lungs, removing even less debris from the airways and leaving them clogged with tar.


Asthma is a chronic condition and is often seen as the ‘silent killer’. At the moment, there are between 300 and 500 million people worldwide who have asthma. The symptoms of asthma are well known – shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness, and cough.

Inhaled asthma meds often go unnoticed and patients don’t know how to control symptoms since they are usually not as effective as other modes of treatment.

When you quit smoking the risks of Asthma decrease.

Colds and lung infections

Smoking will worsen the symptoms of a cold or lung infection. If you want to avoid getting a cold or cough, you should stop smoking.

Flu & Pneumonia

Smoking not only increases a person’s risk to develop the flu or pneumonia, but it also reduces the likelihood of fighting off illnesses like this. As the number of people smoking goes down, so does the chance of developing an illness. Smoking causes higher chances of getting pneumonia and reduces your body’s ability to fight off bacteria due to its toxic properties.

Risks from Smoking: Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

Smoking cigarettes is the leading cause of COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), a dangerous lung condition that hampers your breath intake. It’s one of the leading causes of death in the United States

When you smoke, your risk of death from COPD is 10x higher than if you didn’t smoke at all. COPD is by two diseases: chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

Lung cancer

Lung cancer is the number one type of cancer death in the United States & smoking causes 85% of cases.

Smokers show more of these changes than non-smokers, which could mean they have a higher risk. The more cigarettes smoked per day and the longer someone smokes, the more likely they are to develop these changes.

Additional Health Risks Caused by Smoking


When you smoke cigarettes, it’s really bad for your circulation! The tar in them contains harmful chemicals which can enter your bloodstream when you smoke. Once these poisons reach your bloodstream:

  • Your blood becomes thicker which increases the risk of developing blood clots.
  • Your heart rate rises and your blood pressure spikes. This can make the heart work harder and increase the risk of a heart attack.
  • Carrying less oxygen, your arteries become more narrow and less capable of carrying enough blood to all of your organs.

There are also many risks to smoking, not just lung cancer. Tobacco smokers are 50% more likely to have a stroke and there is also twice the chance of dying from one as well.


Smoking has amazing effects on your digestive system, specifically the esophagus. The esophagus can be weakened by smoking cigarettes allowing acid to travel in the wrong direction through it, which is called reflux.

Research has shown that smoking not only kills but also causes premature aging. Your skin is deprived of oxygen and wrinkles around your eyes and mouth might become more pronounced.


Smoking pollutes the air and those living nearby have to inhale those toxins. Secondhand smoke comes from two sources:

  1. The burning end of the cigarette is getting smaller and smaller, quickly approaching some form of completion.

2. When the smoker exhales smoke

A recent study by researchers studied adult non-smokers who breathed the toxic fumes of cigarette smoke at the workplace. The results showed those adults had reduced lung function and health overall. Therefore the risks of Smoking are deadly quit smoking so that you will be able to reduce all the above risks.

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