We all know that the list of health risks associated with smoking and tobacco use is a long one, and at the top of the list are premature death and reduced quality of life. Nearly half of all smokers who do not quit will die because of smoking. And they will die an average of 8 years earlier than someone like them who does not smoke.

If you smoke – whether it's cigarettes, cigars, or a pipe – you are at increased risk of the following conditions:

  • heart, blood vessel, and circulation problems
  • strokes
  • cancer (e.g., lung cancer, bladder cancer, mouth cancer, and many others)
  • lung conditions
  • oral problems such as gingivitis and periodontal disease
  • erectile dysfunction
  • various other conditions (e.g., osteoporosis, sleep problems, cataracts, and thyroid disease)

The good news is that you can greatly reduce your risk of smoking-related health problems by quitting smoking or reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke each day. Within hours of quitting, many harmful effects that smoking has had on the body begin to reverse, and life expectancy gradually improves. Read "Benefits of quitting smoking" to learn more.

For more information about smoking and quitting strategies, check out our detailed smoking information.

Written and reviewed by the MediResource Clinical Team