Tobacco Smoking: The Health and Financial Effects

Introduction

Tobacco smoking in America started in the 20th century with most states banning the manufacture, selling, and buying of tobacco. This was because of its adverse effects on smokers. Some countries like England had accepted the use of tobacco and this led to the emerging of several tobacco companies in the world. There are several reports about the effects of tobacco smoking in America since the 1920’s (Rowley, 2000). The cancer cases are on the increase and the physicians believe that tobacco smoking is the main cause. It causes lung, pancreas, kidney, and cervix cancer. Tobacco contains nicotine among 4000 other chemicals which makes smoking very addictive (Rowley, 2000). In my project, I will study the effects of smoking on both men and women in my area. I will specifically investigate their health and how smoking affects their spending. This research will give a clear understanding of how smoking is destroying the lives of people and causing unnecessary expenditure. The study will also investigate addiction to smoking which is on the increase.

Thesis statement: Smoking has adverse effects on the health of a smoker and it is the main cause of lung cancer deaths.

Method

I will carry out my study on five tobacco smokers in a nearby smoking zone, three men and two women. Four of the smokers are in their late thirties and one of the men is in his late 60s’. I will visit this smoking zone three times a week for a period of two weeks. I will stay there for an hour a day and observe the smoking behaviour of these people. My aim will be to know their smoking rate and their health status.

  1. I will carry out a review on effects of tobacco smoking from relevant literature. I will rely on health reports and more specifically on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports (Medical Letter on The CDC & FDA, 2002). The reports will give me a better understanding of the effects of smoking and the reported deaths caused by smoking related diseases.
  2. I will observe the five smokers three hours every week. I will visit the smoking zone at different times of the day for comparison. I will focus on the number of cigarettes smoked in an hour; this will give me an estimated number of cigarettes smoked for the two weeks. I will also observe their health whether they are underweight, with unusual coughs, or with unhealthy eyes or gums.
  3. I will interview the smokers on their health. The interview will be informal and not structured in any way. The main aim of the interview is to help me start the research with a wider understanding of the interviewee, and be able to follow up his or her responses in my observation. These are the questions I will ask the interviewee
    1. What do you think about smoking?
    2. For how long have you been smoking?
    3. Have you ever thought of quitting this habit?
    4. How much do you spend on smoking?
    5. Do you think smoking has affected your health?
    6. Have you ever suffered from cancer?
  4. I will carefully analyse my field and interview notes as I check on the health organisations reports for guidance.
  5. I will write my report using my findings from the field and previously recorded reports.

Timetable

16thApril

18thApril

30thApril

1stMay

2ndMay

4thMay

prepare my proposal

finish reviewing the literature

finish my fieldwork

finish the analysis

present my proposal

finish the report

Limitations

The time available is not enough for such a study. Being at the smoking zone for only three hours a week is not enough to reveal all the effects of smoking to the selected people. I am a non-smoker and this may also limit what the smokers reveal to me during the interview. The health history of a person is confidential and this limits what the smokers tell me.

Delimitations

I have decided not to observe and interview many smokers even if this would be very important. I have chosen to concentrate on a few to get the best understanding about them. I also avoided structured interviews so that I do not influence the smokers or put them off.

Conclusion

Smoking has many negative effects on the health of a smoker and the people near him or her. It causes impotence, gum and eye diseases, cancer, and reproductive problems in women (Harvard Mental Letter, 1997). It should be banned to save many Americans from these diseases and avoid unnecessary spending. This research is aimed at informing people about the effects of smoking and it is never too late to stop smoking and enjoy a life free of health risks.

Reference

Harvard Mental Health Letter (1997). Nicotine Is Addictive. 2, 50-56.

Medical Letter on The CDC & FDA. (2002). Smoking Is Harmful to Human Health. 34-40.

Rowley, C.H. (2000). Nicotine Addiction Is the Major Cause of Tobacco Use. 15-20.