Smoking is the biggest preventable cause of cancer in the UK. Smoking can cause several different types of cancer as the chemicals, mainly carcinogens, in cigarette smoke enters the bloodstream where it is carried around the body. Quitting smoking is the best thing a person can do to aid in reducing cancer risks.
What is cancer?
Cancer is a common disease which has been around for many years and has devasted many families. But do we all know exactly what cancer is? Cancer is a disease characterised by abnormal cells which uncontrollably divide and invade other bodily tissues. The cancerous cells can spread to other parts of the body through the blood and lymphatic systems, which are both vital in the body as they help get rid of toxins.
How is smoking related to cancer?
The carcinogens in tobacco smoke causes cancer and can block the body from fighting the cancerous cells as the poisons in cigarette smoke weakens the immune system, making it difficult to kill cancer cells. Therefore, the cancer cells keep growing without being stopped. The poisons in tobacco smoke also damage and change a cell’s DNA. DNA is the cell’s ‘instruction manual’ for normal cell growth and function. When it is damaged, the cell begins to uncontrollably grow and create a cancerous tumour.
What types of cancers are caused from smoking?
15 different types of cancer are associated with smoking: bladder, bowel, cervix, kidney, larynx (voice box), liver, lung, mouth, nose and sinuses, oesophagus (food pipe), ovary, pancreas, pharynx (upper throat), some types of leukaemia and stomach. We will look at a few of these types of cancers in a little more detail.
Smoking cigarettes doubles the risk of developing kidney cancer with men 2 to 3 times more likely to develop kidney cancer compared to women. It is believed that tobacco smoking is responsible for approximately 30% of kidney cancer cases in men and approximately 25% in women.
Laryngeal Cancer (Voice Box)
When you smoke, it is passed through the larynx to the lungs. Tobacco smoking is one of the main, and most important, risk factors for laryngeal cancer in the western world. Those who smoke more than 25 cigarettes er day or who have smoked for more than 40 years are 40 times more likely to develop laryngeal cancer than those who do not smoke.
Cigarette smoking is the biggest risk factor for lung cancer and is responsible for more than 70% of cases. Interestingly, the NHS state: “if you smoke more than 25 cigarettes a day, you are 25 times more likely to get lung cancer than a non-smoker”. It is not only cigarette smoking that increases the risk of lung cancer. Other tobacco products also increases the risk of lung cancer, including: chewing tobacco, cigars, pipe tobacco, snuff (powdered form of tobacco).
Cannabis smoking also increases the risk of lung cancer as most cannabis smokers mix cannabis with tobacco. Whilst cannabis smokers tend to smoke less tobacco compared to regular cigarette smokers, cannabis smokers tend to inhale more deeply and hold the smoke in their lungs for longer. Consequently, it is estimated that smoking 4 joints (homemade containing a mix of tobacco and cannabis), may be just as damaging as smoking 20 cigarettes.
How to prevent cancer?
If you are a current tobacco smoker, stop smoking. Quitting smoking reduces the risk of cancer, even if you have smoked for years. Here at Ziggicig, we understand that it can be difficult to take the leap to quit smoking, but we do know that it is not impossible. There are various options that are helpful to make the switch. We all opted for e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes are 95% less harmful than tobacco smoke.
How can Ziggicig help?
At Ziggicig, we will help you make the switch, and we will be part of your journey to Make the Switch. E-cigarettes still provide the smoking sensation, but again, are 95% less harmful than tobacco smoking. We offer a variety of starter pod kits as we understand that everyone’s smoking needs are different.
We also offer a 4-week switch kit which includes: 6 10ml bottles of Ohm Brew, The Innokin Sceptre Devices, 2 spare coils and a 4-week switch guide.