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Smoking and Air Pollution

Written and reviewed by
Dr. Nikhil Modi 90% (224 ratings)
MD, MBBS
Pulmonologist, Delhi  •  14 years experience
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Hello my friends.

I m Dr. Nikhil Modi and I am consultant respiratory specialist in Indraprastha Apollo hospital, Sarita Vihar, New Delhi. Today I will be talking about harmful effects of smoking and air pollution. As we know smoking has been a very important risk factor for causing numerous diseases in our body. Further now with the growing prevalence of air pollution which everyone has been talking about, we have read in newspapers, in media, so this pollution along with smoking is harming us to a large extent.

What are the diseases and how it cause? We all breathe all the time and when we smoke all the smoke goes through our air ways into our lungs and breathing continues even in air pollution so the pollution is also inhaled in our body. These air pollution and the smoke from the cigarettes which we inhale are full of large toxic agents. Some of them also are cancer causing agents. Some of them are harmful gases like sulphur dioxide, chlorofluorocarbon, and others. There are more than thousands of carcinogenic agents which are present in the smoke.

So we are been constantly expose to them. By inhaling them what all side effects can be there? It can start from very mild side effects from itching in the nose, sneezing, running nose, itching and watering of eyes which can be mild. Further down the airways involving causing bronchitis, asthma. It has to be noted here due to this growing air pollution and smoke. The number of asthma cases are on the rise. Now recent data has shown one in every 3 children. So small children are suffering from asthma which has been aggravated by all this air pollution and smoke.

Further this air pollution and smoke is harmful because it makes our body prone to large number of infections especially pneumonia. The pneumonia which was usually easy to treat now because of this smoking and everything they become difficult to treat and also can be a cause of death. Further, there is an increased risk of tuberculosis in patients who smoke and air pollution further adding to that. The most important of all is increasing number of lung cancer cases. Lung cancer, smoking has been identified with a most important factor which increases the risk of lung cancer.

So smoking harms our body. Further I would like to say smoking not only affects our lungs but through the when it is inhaled in the lungs it goes into the blood vessels and to other organs and it can also lead to cancer of other parts of the body. It can lead to increase the risk of heart attacks, it can lead to increase in the number of brain strokes also. So it is no part of the body is safe and all of them can be involved with smoking. Further this rising air pollution is also harmful. So what can we do? Smoking obviously we have to stop, it is in our hand if we stop smoking and then all of these can be minimized.

Further we have to support the government policies in reducing air pollution. We should not burn coal, should not burn wood, we should get our automobile service on time so that there is minimal emission of harmful gases from our pollution. And all other measures which we can take to minimize air pollution. Especially reduction of exposure of this air pollution and smoke in patients who are already allergic, prone to asthma so that they can lead a healthy life. It is important we do that because it is our future generation our children who are going to suffer from that and it is high time we take some action against that. And for smoking smoking cessation can also be done, there are ways of doing that through counselling and through the drugs which you can contact any specialist. You can contact me you can meet me in Indraprastha Apollo hospital or you can contact me through lybrate platform so that I can be your helper, helping you quit smoking. Thank you!

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