Nicotine And Women

Smoking is a habit that does no one good. Even a single cigarette is harmful for the system. Women suffer from all the negative effects of smoking as men do. These include a higher risk of cancer including cancers of the lung, mouth, larynx, pharynx, esophagus, kidney, pancreas, kidney and bladder. Other smoking risks associated with the habit include all kinds of respiratory diseases. Women smokers are at a 12 times higher risk of dying from lung cancer and 10 times more likely to meet their death from bronchitis and emphysema.

Some of the specific risks that women face when they indulge are discussed below.


Women smokers have reduced fertility. A study showed that 38 percent of non smoking women conceived in their first cycle as against only 28 percent of those who did. A woman smoker is more likely (3.4 times more) to take more than a year to conceive.


Secondary amenorrhea (absence of menstruation or irregular menstruation) is a common issue that female smokers face. Vaginal discharge that is not regular and bleeding is also common. The toxic effect also leads to a quicker menopause than what would have been otherwise.


Lower levels of estrogen in women who smoke leads to early menopause! While estrogen replacement therapy helps, taking external hormones and smoking at the same time increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases.


Smoking reduces the bone density and therefore increases the already high risk of osteoporosis in women. It was seen that women who smoke more than 20 cigarettes a day lower their bone density by 5 to 10 percent. This reduction can lead to significantly higher chances of fractures.


Women who smoke through their pregnancy have children who are more susceptible to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The habit also leads to preterm delivery that can bring other issues related to it along with. Chances of low birth weight, placenta previa, miscarriage and neonatal death is also common. Smoking can also reduce the flow of blood to the fetus thereby reducing the amount of nutrients that reach it.

Oral contraception

The use of oral contraceptives along with smoking increases the risk of heart attack, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases in women by ten times. This smoking risk increases with age and is considerably higher in women above the age of 35.

Other smoking risks

Smoking risks include lung cancer to a large extent in women. It is estimated that about 68,000 women in the US die each year from the condition. The risk of cardiovascular diseases is three times higher in middle aged smoking women than in middle aged non smoking women, according to the American Heart Association. Skin related issues such as wrinkles and spotting are also known to appear in women who smoke. It also leads to yellow and stained teeth, bad breath, tartar deposits and tooth loss.

The best way of managing the issue of smoking is to ensure that you never really start. One way in which you can keep your teenager from smoking is to make her aware that you have a nicotine test at home that you can use anytime. Stay vigilant about telltale signs of smoking so as to prevent the habit from forming in the first place.