According to the World Health Organization, the short-term effects of smoking on young people are a reduction in physical fitness and endurance, a higher resting heart rate, shortness of breath, and an increase in likelihood of using other drugs or engaging in risky behavior. Even in young smokers, there can be early signs of heart disease and decreased lung capacity and growth.
1. Greater risk of infections. Pathogens found in cigarette smoke have an immediate effect on smokers’ immune system, making smokers more prone to sinus, ear, and lung infections.
2. Respiratory issues increase. Smoking stunts lung growth, and decreases current lung capactiy, causing smokers to be “out of breath” more easily. Plus, halitosis (bad breath) does not take long to develop!
3. Smoking when young can significantly increase risk for cardiovascular issues later. Tobacco releases carbon monoxide, a highly dangerous substance, into a smoker’s blood stream. Smoking can lead to many heart issues down the road, especially blod clots and heart attacks.
The most important effect is probably the risk of addiction to nicotine. Remember, addiction is a disease!
The three short term health effects for young people that come to my mind is horrible hacking and coughing, increased risk for infection, and reduced endurance and physical fitness. These are just the short term affects and can happen within weeks of smoking. There are much more serious effects that can occur the longer you smoke.
Smoking also raises your blood pressure and heart rate.
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