Cigarette smoke contains thousdands of chemicals
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), cigarette smoke has approximately 4,000 chemical agents. When you smoke, these chemicals enter your mouth and throat. Many of these chemicals are cancer-causing agents (carcinogens) such as benzene, butane, arsenic, ammonia, methoprene, cadmium, formaldehyde and tar.
For instance, tar contains polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and is extremely toxic. Tar causes stains in smoker's teeth and fingers.
Despite the misconception, nicotine does not contribute to cancer.
Carcinogens inhaled during smoking might lead to throat cancer
Smoking is a major risk factor for throat cancer. Smoking accounts for 75 to 80% of cases of throat cancer. Smokers are 2 to 5 times more likely to develop throat cancers in comparison to the general population.
There are several types of throat cancer, including nasopharyngeal, laryngeal (cancer of the voice box), oropharyngeal, hypopharyngeal and glottic cancer (cancer of the vocal cords).
The carcinogens in cigarette smoke may damage the genetic material (DNA) of cells in tissues in the throat. The heat carried by the smoke into the throat is also a contributing factor to throat cancer.
Under normal conditions, the damaged cells are often repaired. However, in some cases, the damage can not be repaired and leads to gene mutation. Some mutations are particularly dangerous if they involve genes that control cell growth and cell division. A cell may lose its ability to control growth and undergo cell division excessively. This eventually leads to a tumor.
In addition to throat cancer, smoking also increases the risk of lung, kidney, stomach, bladder and pancreatic cancer.
Smoking affects oral and dental health
Smokers often have stained teeth. In most cases, smoker stains can not be removed by normal tooth-brushing and have to be removed by special dental treatment.
Smoking reduces the resistance of gum to plaque bacteria. Furthermore, the blood flow to the gum is significantly reduced due to smoking. Consequently, smoking increases risk of gum diseases.
Smoking can cause sore throat and excessive coughing
As mentioned above, cigarette smoke contains a large number of chemicals. Many of them can cause inflammation of the respiratory tract. This leads to swelling, redness and elevated production of mucus.
Smokers therefore often have laryngitis (inflammation of the larynx). Vocal cords are damaged, which causes a hoarse voice. In some extreme cases, laryngitis can cause total loss of voice. Some smokers end up with polyps on their vocal cords.
The vocal cord is still damaged even after smoking has ceased. Surgery maybe required in order to repair the vocal cord and to remove inflammatory lesions. Many singers lose their voices due to smoking, even when surgical measures are taken.
About Sore Throats
Sore throat is usually caused by viral infection. In the medical community, sore throat is also known as pharyngitis. It is one...
First Signs of Throat Cancer
Throat cancer occurs in the hollow tube that begins behind the roof of the mouth and the nose, merges into the windpipe,...
About Coughing After Quitting Smoking
Coughing after quitting smoking is a normal part of the quitting process. Unfortunately, the cough can lead to a sore throat and...
Causes of a Dry Throat
There are many things that can cause dry throat. Dry throat is often a symptom to a more serious problem and you...
Chronic Inflammation of the Throat
Pharyngitis is the medical term for inflammation of the throat. Primarily characterized by redness, swelling and discomfort, most cases of pharyngitis are...
What Does Smoking Do to You?
Smoking can harm almost every organ in your body. Not only does smoking have adverse effects on your body, but smoking can...
What Causes Throat Cancer?
A strange tickle or lump in your throat that is not related to a cold and does not go away may be...
Mucus After Quitting Smoking
People usually notice excess mucus, accompanied by a persistent cough, after quitting smoking. These symptoms are part of the physical withdrawal from...
A throat abscess is a pocket of pus that forms due to an infection in the body. When a throat abscess occurs,...
A variety of causes exist for bleeding in the throat. For example, if someone suffers from bulimia they may experience bleeding in...
How to Know When to See a Doctor for Persistent Sore Throat
Sore throats are caused by a variety of things, including airborne irritants, common colds and more serious illnesses such as strep throat....
How Does Smoking Affect Your Lungs?
The lungs are greatly affected by smoking because the tiny hairs inside the lungs, called the cilia, are slowed, ceasing their ability...
How Does Smoking Affect Your Throat?
When smoking, the heat that enters the throat causes inflammation and irritation, which can lead to swelling and discomfort. Find out how...
Stop the Annoying Drip in the Throat After Smoking
Smoking can be irritating to the airway, and it can increase mucus production that can be treated with a decongestant. Find out...