Smoking has become a common way of using drugs especially tobacco through cigarette smoking. Other drugs that are smoked include opium, cannabis and some hard narcotics such as heroin and cocaine. It involves burning of a substance like tobacco which is sucked in through inhaling, primarily through the mouth, and goes all the way into the lungs. The active substances, known as nicotine, after absorption trigger chemical reactions in the nerve endings which increase the heart rate, alertness, memory and reaction time. Smoking nowadays is related with leisure and recreation as is done by over a billion people worldwide. This practice of smoking can be dated back to 5000 BC in many cultures where it was used in religious ceremonies for cleansing and offering sacrifices among other spiritual aspects.
Smoking is one of the major enemies in the society, health, environment and people. It has become an enemy as it has brought a lot of harm in the mentioned places. For instance in the society, many smokers start at the adolescent stage where they are trying to figure out who they are and where exactly they fit in society. As a result of peer pressure and negative influence from the media, family members and friends. Smoking therefore is an enemy to the society since it has deteriorated the morality of the young people in the society who could be the leaders of tomorrow. This is shown where the young adults have experimented on smoking out of curiosity and some find it pleasurable and relaxing and before too long, they find themselves addicted to it. This addiction lowers the rate of performance in the society hence they become dependants.
Smoking has also become an enemy to the health for those using the drugs. The young people using the drugs become addicts hence quitting becomes hard. This is due to the withdrawal symptoms and negative reinforcements. It cannot be overemphasized just how deadly smoking is as it harms almost every organ in the body. It is said that there are more deaths occurring in the United States as a result of smoking than the number related to motor vehicle accidents, illegal drugs, alcohol, HIV, suicides and murder combined. This indeed is a shocking statistic. The number of deaths as a result of smoking is 443,000 annually or one out of every five deaths is as a result of smoking. It is estimated that 90% of all lung cancer related deaths are as a result of smoking in men and the same case is true for 80% in women. Smoking also causes 90% of deaths due to chronic obstructive lung disease (CDC, 2011).
More so, smoking has also shown more harm to health in that, apart from lung cancer, smoking causes ten other types of cancer. These are cancer of the cervix, kidney cancer, stomach cancer, and cancer of the larynx (voice box). Also included are cancer of the esophagus, cancer of the oral cavity (mouth), bladder cancer, cancer of the pharynx (throat) and acute myeloid leukemia. Another harmful effect of cigarette smoking is coronary heart disease which happens to be the leading cause of death in the United States. It causes the narrowing of blood vessels (arteries) due to reduced blood circulation which can lead to peripheral vascular disease.
Smoking has also become an enemy to the environment in that, smoke produced when smoking causes air pollution. It also affects the ozone layer which leads to global warming though in small amounts but finally causes harm. Smokers also throw lit cigarettes which cause fires which consume all the vegetation in the area. There is also the aspect of littering which is contributed by the smokers. This results to the environment being dirty hence causing a health risk to the society.
Despite numerous anti-smoking campaigns even the more graphic ones on the cigarette packs showing pictures of the harmful effects of smoking in human beings, people continue practicing this behavior, some for leisure, others fighting to quit. Rehabilitation and counseling is necessary to stem this practice and save countless lives while uplifting human health and productivity (Petrie, 2005).
CDC (2011). “Smoking and Tobacco Use.” Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.
Petrie, G., (2005). “Smoking – health risks.” netdoctor. Retrieved from