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Smoking is known to cause lung cancer, but it is also linked to cancers of the:
- Mouth and throat (mouth, throat, oesophagus, pharynx, larynx, tongue, lips and salivary glands)
- Cervix and vulva
- Kidney and liver
- Blood (leukaemia and multiple myeloma)
In addition to being a leading cause of cancer, smoking is also linked to an extensive range of serious and life-threatening diseases. Smoking is linked to heart disease, stroke, peptic ulcers, chronic bronchitis, asthma, emphysema, peripheral vascular disease (a cause of gangrene), macular degeneration (a common cause of blindness).
Women who smoke during pregnancy have a greater risk of miscarriage, pregnancy complications and their babies are more likely to have a low birth weight. Parental smoking increases the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) or cot death.
If you smoke your body is constantly working to try and repair the damage caused by the chemicals in tobacco smoke. However, by quitting you can give your body the chance to repair itself. For every hour, week, month and year you don’t smoke, you will be better off.