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Do You Know There are 4000 Chemicals in a Single Puff of Cigarette?

By Dr. Sachin Gupta in Cancer Care / Oncology , Medical Oncology

Nov 08 , 2020 | 1 min read

Out of the 4000 chemicals, 69 of them are known as carcinogens i.e. cancer causing agents or poisonous chemicals like tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide. India is facing a smoking death crisis and it has been predicted that 1million people will die every year from tobacco smoking in the next 10 years. The after effects of these habits are seen decades later resulting in immense physical, psychological and financial trauma and deteriorating medical conditions like COPD liver diseases and cancer. 

Smoking accounts for 90,000 deaths in a year. The death toll from smoke would be climbing further. In fact, 90% of lung cancer deaths in men and women are due to smoking. People who smoke 10 to 20 times more are more likely to die from lung cancer than people who do not smoke.

What happens when you smoke?

It takes only 8 seconds for the nicotine to travel to the bloodstream and then brain. Eventually, you may experience:

  • Fast Heartbeat
  • Increase in Blood Pressure
  • Decrease in the sense of smell and taste
  • Yellowing of teeth and fingernails
  • Foul smell in hair, breath and clothes

Dr. Sachin Gupta, Principal Consultant, Medical and Hemato-Oncology, Max Super Speciality Hospital Mohali says, smokers are more likely to perform poorly on fitness evaluations and are prone to injuries particularly musculoskeletal injuries.  

Are you aware of the dangerous chemicals in tobacco smoke?

  • Arsenic: Used in rat poison and pesticides
  • Acetic Acid: Found in vinegar, hair dye and photo developing fluid
  • Acetone: The main ingredient in paint thinner and fingernail polish remover
  • Ammonia: A typical household cleaning fluid
  • Benzene: Found in gasoline
  • Butane: Chemical found in lighter fluid, pesticides and paints
  • Cadmium: Found in batteries and artist’s paints
  • Carbon Monoxide: A poisonous gas found in car exhaust, as well as from other sources
  • DDT: A chemical formerly used as an insecticide
  • Formaldehyde: Used to embalm dead bodies.
  • Hydrazine: Used in rocket fuel
  • Hydrogen Cyanide: Used as a poison in gas chambers and chemical weapons
  • Lead: A toxic metal
  • Naphthalene: Used in mothballs and some paints
  • Nitrobenzene: Used as a solvent in petroleum refining
  • Phenol: Used in disinfectants and plastics