As well as the cigarettes most well known component nicotine, there are more than 4,000 other chemicals which make up cigarette smoke, some of which are renowned for their toxicity and some of which many smokers wouldn’t dream of touching in their own right. Listed below are just a few:
Acetone – Commonly found in nail polish remover
Ammonia – Found in many domestic toilet cleaning products
Arsenic – Poison
Cadmium – An extremely poisonous metal used in batteries
Carbon monoxide – Poisonous gas given off by exhausts, gas fires and cigarette smoke. Can be fatal in large quantities and in small amounts such as from cigarettes will effect the smoker’s breathing
Cyanide – Lethal gas used in World War 2 gas chambers
Formaldehyde – Used for the preservation of dead bodies
Napthalene – Used in moth balls
Nicotine – This is what many people initially think of when they think ‘cigarettes’. Nicotine is absorbed into the bloodstream when smokers inhale and immediately begins to increase heart rate and causes a rise in blood pressure.
Tar – Stains fingers and teeth a yellow brown colour and clogs smoker’s lungs
Vinyl chloride – Used to make PVC
If you are a smoker and would like to give up there are various services and help available which could help you on your way to quitting. Hypnotherapy is one avenue that many smoker’s explore and find helpful and if you would like to find out more about how it could help you then please visit our smoking fact sheet here.
To find out more about nicotine addiction and cigarettes you can view the BBC fact sheet here.