To Smoke Or Not To Smoke?

I'm not writing this to judge you. I'm writing this to give you the facts. What smoking can in fact cost you. I'm not saying, "do not smoke", I'm saying, "Before you do smoke, know what it might cost you in the long run." So before you light up, take the time to read this.

Cigarettes, smokes, fags. They make you look cool don't they? In this day and age, it's becoming a growing trend to be seen having something hanging out of your mouth. It's "cool" to stink of cigarette smoke and to have bad breath. It's cool to have yellow teeth, yellow nails, and yellow fingers. It's cool to look like you're 55 by the time you're 40. If smoking is "cool" then what it does to you is cool too, right? These things will happen, if you smoke for long enough. What seems to do no damage now, won't always be like that. If you're smoking or thinking about smoking to improve your "image", then consider whether yellow teeth, yellow nails, bad breath, constantly smelling of cigarettes and pre-aging is going to help too.

You see movie stars smoking while shopping, at award ceremonies, and even in films. People will always want to copy those more famous than themselves. I think that the best thing you could do in this situation is to ask yourself this question: "Where will they be in thirty years time?" In thirty years time, is it going to be important who it was that you copied when you were in your teens? In thirty years time, is it going to matter whether your friends thought you were "cool"?

"My friends do it"; peer pressure. I'm sure everyone has experienced it at one point in their lives. Some of us may have fallen under it; some of us may have stood firm. In reality, it's up to you. Are you going to let your friends dictate your life or your future? A simple "no" is all it takes to not let them. Afraid they will fall out with you? Then you need to ask yourself what sort of friends they are. Any true friend would respect your decision and not push you into doing something you don't want to.

Saving up for a new pair of sneakers? Seen a jacket that you like? If you start smoking, you're going to have a considerable amount less to spend on things you enjoy buying. Can you afford to start smoking? One pack a week at $5 (USD) will soon increase and eventually you may find yourself spending everything you earn on cigarettes. If that's the case, you can forget those sneakers. You can forget that jacket.

Everyone has heard that smoking can cause cancer. It's something that people now associate with smoking. I didn't want to go through this again, as most people already know. I want to make clear the extensive risk to your health through smoking. If you smoke for a lifetime, there is a 50% chance that your death will be related to smoking, and half of all these deaths will be when the person is middle aged. A list of diseases smoking causes or contributes to could easily be several pages long.

Are you pregnant? Smoking and pregnancy do not mix. During pregnancy smoking can seriously affect the unborn child. The child can be born underweight and has a greater risk of contracting illnesses. Smoking during pregnancy also vastly increases the risk of a miscarriage and stillbirths.

As I have said, I am not here to judge you. I wrote this, as I would not wish the consequences of smoking onto anyone or anyone's family. When it comes down to it, whether you light up or not is your choice and your choice only. Just ask yourself one question, "is it worth it?"