WHAT IS TOBACCO?
- Tobacco comes from a plant and contains the stimulant drug, nicotine.
- It is usually smoked in cigarettes, cigars and pipes, but is also found in a powdered form called snuff (to be sniffed up the nose) and as chewing tobacco or dip.
WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF SMOKING?
- Smoking kills more than 400,000 Americans each year.
- More than 3,000 kids become regular smokers each day.
- Smokers lose an average of 12 years of life due to their habit.
- The chemical nicotine found in cigarettes and other tobacco products is an addictive drug, which is why it is so hard for people to quit using tobacco once they start. Nicotine is also a deadly poison used in many bug sprays. It is so potent that one drop (70 mg) in its liquid form will kill an average adult.
- Smoking turns your teeth and fingernails yellow, makes your hair, clothes and breath smell gross and causes premature wrinkling of your skin.
- With every puff on a cigarette, you breathe 4,700 different chemicals, including ammonia, arsenic, cyanide, acetone, formaldehyde, toluene (a poisonous industrial solvent) polonium 210 (a highly radioactive element) and carbon monoxide.
- Lung cancer, throat cancer, heart disease, stroke and emphysema are just some of the painful, life-threatening diseases linked with smoking.
- 90% of men smokers are age 18 and younger. The average smoker starts at age 12, and is addicted to nicotine by age 13 or 14.
- Teen smokers are three times more likely to use alcohol, 8 times more likely to use marijuana, and 22 times more likely to use cocaine than non-smokers.