There’s no way around it; smoking is bad for your health. It harms nearly every organ of the body, some that you would not expect. Cigarette smoking causes nearly one in five deaths in the Pakistan Women who smoke while pregnant to have a greater chance of certain pregnancy problems.

Specifically addressed are the evidence for and possible physiologic causes of disturbance in 3 areas: female fertility, male fertility, and the effect of smoking on reproduction and pregnancy. Approximately 30% of women and 36% of men of reproductive age in the US are smokers. The literature offers clear support for an association between smoking and decreased female fecundity and fertility, especially with a relationship to primary tubal infertility.

Cigarette smoke appears to have adverse effects along a continuum of preimplantation and implantation reproductive processes, including gamete production and function, ovulation and cyclicity, fertilization, early embryonic cleavage, embryo transport, and implantation. In men, there is clear evidence that smoking results in fewer and less motile sperm as well as a lower proportion of normally shaped sperm; however, it remains unclear whether this impairment in spermatogenesis results in clinical impairment of fertility.

Studies have demonstrated a significant increase among smoker both in the risk of spontaneously aborting a chromosomally normal fetus and in the risk of spontaneously aborting a chromosomally normal fetus and in the risk of prematurity. Moreover, smoking has been shown to cause a 150-300 gram decrease interm infant birth weight. Al these risks to fecundity and pregnancy outcome are minimized or absent in former smokers. It is stressed that efforts to persuade women to stop smoking have been inadequate.

It is particularly imperative for women who have had difficulties conceiving or have had a history of miscarriages to give up cigarette smoking. Smoking even just one cigarette per day over a lifetime can cause smoking-related cancers and premature death. Quitting smoking can reduce your risk of health problems. The earlier you quit, the greater the benefit. Proposes that both cigarette smoking and smoking cessation are highly relevant to the clinical psychiatrist in the care of patients and that they are potentially a source of important insights into psychopathology.

I believe that both major depression and depressive symptoms are associated with a high rate of cigarette smoking and that lifetime history of major depression has an adverse impact on smoking cessation. The influence of cigarette smoking cessation on the course of major depression; the relationship between cigarette smoking and other psychiatric diagnoses, particularly schizophrenia; and the neuropharmacology that might underlie these associations. You’re not alone if you use smoking to calm your nerves and deal with feelings of anxiety. But the truth is, nicotine can cause anxiety symptoms or make them worse.

Some regular smokers believe smoking eases anxiety and they report this is a reason they continue to smoke. However, that’s because smoking relieves their nicotine withdrawal symptoms. This relief is only temporary. Unless they deal with what’s bothering them, anxiety is likely to return and the cycle will continue. Smokers are more likely to have depression than non-smokers.

Nobody knows for sure why this is. Mood changes are common after quitting smoking. Some people feel increased sadness and you might be irritable, restless, or feel down or blue. Changes in mood from quitting smoking may be part of withdrawal, which is your body getting used to not having nicotine. Mood changes from nicotine withdrawal usually get better in a week or two.

If mood changes do not get better in a couple of weeks, you should talk to your doctor. Something else, like depression, could be the reason Smoking may seem to help you with depression. You might feel better in the moment. But there are many problems with using cigarettes to cope with depression. Some people smoke when they feel stressed. They use smoking as a way to cope. There are many problems with using cigarettes as a way to cope with stress or other unpleasant feelings Smoking isn’t a long-term stress reliever.

In the time it takes to smoke a cigarette, you could do something else that’s more effective and healthy—like take a short walk or try a relaxation exercise. Smoking doesn’t solve the problem that’s giving you stress. Your stress will return. Nicotine addiction causes stress. Cravings for nicotine feel stressful because your body begins to go through withdrawal. Some smokers find it hard to give up cigarettes as a way to cope with stress. It’s important to find healthy ways to handle stress and take care of yourself without smoking. There are many other ways to cope with the stress that don’t involve smoking.

WHEN it comes to youth, who are more than 50 per cent of our population, we see that the state is not as active as it should be to save the younger generation from tobacco. Young people are becoming drug addicts and the death rate is rising owing to tobacco use. Heart conditions, lung diseases and many types of cancers are the outcomes of smoking. It is sad to see how we are silently watching our young generation suffering owing to smoking.

Every year we see a price hike in cigarettes, but, on the other hand, we see our children buying cigarettes at cheaper prices. Another dangerous thing is the tactics being used by local tobacco companies to lure our youth by offering gifts, free cigarettes and cash prizes. The minimum price of a pack of 20 cigarettes is about Rs50. Then how are cheaper cigarettes being sold in the market? Where are the law enforcement agencies? Who is responsible for this?

The government should come up with strong action against the violators if we are really serious in protecting our youth. The price hike every year is merely the eyewash because the implementation of the laws is more important than making new laws.

 KARACHI: An estimated 1,000 to 1,200 schoolchildren between six and 16 years of age are taking up smoking every day in Pakistan, where 160,000 people die every year due to tobacco-related diseases. Successive governments made a compromise on public health as they didn’t impose high taxes on the tobacco industry — a strategy which has brought a significant reduction in smoking in other countries.

These points were shared on Monday at a media orientation session on the impact of tobacco smoking on children organised by the Society for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (Sparc), Karachi, at a local hotel. Highlighting how successive governments ignored the gravity of growing tobacco use, Sadia Shakeel of Sparc said that big tobacco industry caused a whopping Rs153 billion loss to the national exchequer between 2016 and 2019 by being awarded low tax rate and through price adjustments of their most sold brands.

“Almost 90 per cent of all brands consumed in Pakistan were taxed as “low” tiers under the previous tax system (FY 2016-17). Big tobacco companies share 75pc of the total market, which means they were able to sell 120 billion cigarettes in the same period,” she said. Sharing the WHO statistics, Dr Farah Iqbal, a senior professor and chairperson of the Karachi University’s psychology department, said that tobacco was the only legal drug that killed many of its users.

“The WHO estimates that tobacco use (smoking and smokeless) is currently responsible for the death of about six million people across the world each year with many of these deaths occurring prematurely. This total includes about 600,000 people who die from the effects of second-hand smoke,” she said. Smoking caused, she pointed out, more deaths each year than alcohol misuse, HIV, illegal drug use, motor vehicle injuries and homicides combined. Highlighting how tobacco damages health, Prof Iqbal said that there was more to cigarettes than just nicotine as they contained over 4,000 chemicals, over 50 of which were known to be toxic in nature.

“As adolescent brains are still developing, nicotine exposure during youth and young adulthood can change the way the brain works, leading to a lifetime of addiction and may cause long-lasting effects such as increased impulsivity and mood disorders,” she said, adding that smoking was associated with a host of other risky behaviours and most doctors agreed that smoking should be classified as a medical condition.

Submitted by “Briya Akmal”