Smoking means a practice whereby people burn a substance which results in a smoke that can be breathed in, which is tasted and then absorbed into the bloodstream. The most common substance that is smoked is the dried leaves of the tobacco plant, which when rolled up inside a square piece of paper, creates a small round cylinder- called a cigarette.
Smoking is an age old tradition whereby this practice was primarily practiced as a route of administration for recreational drugs. It’s been because the combustion of the dried leaves and herbs vaporizes very fast and can deliver active narcotic substances into the pulmonary system, where they are absorbed rapidly into the bloodstream to reach our brain and other tissues in our body. In the case of cigarette smoking dried tobacco leaf releases aerosol, gasses and needless to say alkaloid nicotine, which, when absorbed into the bloodstream through the lungs creates a feeling of satiety. In some cultures all around the world smoking is till used as a part of various traditional rituals , where participants use this practice to enter a trance like state, which some believe lead them to ‘spiritual enlightenment’. Generally any kind of smoking has negative health effects. As smoking poses a threat to various physiological processes, particularly to our cardio-respiratory system. Diseases that occurs out of smoking have shown mortality for approximately half of the long term smokers, when compared to the death rates faced by non-smokers.
Researches do confirm that smoking tobacco, is the most common recreational drug practiced by over one billion people in present times, of whom most are the citizens of the developing countries across the globe. Less common drugs that are smoked are marijuana (cannabis) and opium. Hard narcotic chemicals like heroin and others are also smoked, but their use is limited, as these chemicals are hard to be found commercially. Cigarettes, on the other hand, are manufactured industrially for commercial use, but then again, they can also be hand-rolled using loose tobacco and rolling papers. Some of the other things that are often smoked are pipes, bidis, vaporizers, hookahs and bongs.
In the present times many governments across the world is deterring their citizen from smoking and highlighting on anti-smoking campaigns, stressing on the harmful long-term effects of this age-old practice. Passive smoking, which affects the health of other non-smokers and children in the vicinity of the smokers, is one major reason for enforcement of this smoking ban. Especially in indoor public places, like bars, restaurants, and bars.