You’ve probably wondered if cigarettes have an expiry date and what would happen if you smoked expired cigarettes.
It’s possible that you’ve been smoking cigarettes for so long that you’re inattentive to its effects. It turns out that there are many negative long-term effects of smoking cigarettes, and it doesn’t matter if they’re new or old.
Before we look at the effects of smoking expired cigarettes, Let’s first look at what their expiry looks like.
Do cigarettes expire?
Just like every other product on earth, cigarettes certainly lose their freshness over a certain period however, cigarettes do not have an exact expiry date. As directed by the World Health Organisation, cigarette companies are forbidden from printing expiry dates on their tobacco packages.
The purpose is to curtail the thought among consumers that cigarettes are safe to smoke if they are taken before the expiry date.
Well, there are ways to determine the shelf life of cigarettes and this involves knowing the manufacturing date of the cigarette which can be a bit complicated.
Once you have known the production date it is easier to know how much shelf life it has.
What makes a cigarette expire?
Cigarettes do not have an expiry date but they can become stale. Stale cigarettes are the ones which have lost their moisture and are therefore not very enjoyable to smokers. Usually, these cigarettes have been left unused for a long time making them lose their freshness, smell and flavour.
Microorganisms can also grow on cigarettes when they are left exposed for some time. These microorganisms contribute to the development of certain infections in the respiratory system.
What are the effects of smoking expired cigarettes?
Smoking has generally been frowned upon by health experts due to the harm they cause to the human body. It doesn’t really matter whether a cigarette is expired or not, smoking has been known to be one of the leading causes of lung diseases, cancer and many other diseases.
Although stale cigarettes can taste less palatable for smokers, the effects on the body are generally the same. Listed below are 7 effects of smoking expired cigarettes.
1. Can cause respiratory problems
Smoking cigarettes can cause a number of respiratory diseases. Substances inhaled during smoking can damage the lungs over time leading to diseases such as lung cancer, bronchitis and COPD.
Smoking has also been shown to increase the risk of developing mouth and throat cancers.
2. Can cause heart diseases and cardiovascular diseases
Smoking increases the risk of heart attack and stroke by raising the bad cholesterol levels in the body. It is estimated that smokers are about 2 times more likely to die of a heart attack when compared to non-smokers.
Smoking can also trigger the formation of blood clots within your veins which in turn can lead to a stroke.
3. Can cause cancer
It has been known that smoking cigarettes leads to cancer. The harmful substances in cigarettes cause damage to the DNA in the body leading to the formation of cancer cells. Smoking also interferes with the body’s immune system making it harder for the body to fight malignant cells.
Research has shown that smoking can lead to cancer of the lungs, mouth, throat, pancreas and bladder, among others.
4. Can be very addictive
Nicotine is the major component in tobacco that alters mood. Its effect on the brain is quick and euphoric however, the effect begins to wear off after a while causing you to need more. This is why smokers find it very difficult to quit smoking.
Quitting smoking also causes withdrawal symptoms such as headache, insomnia, and mood swings but these symptoms only last a while and you’ll be feeling great again if you endure a few bad days.
5. Can affect reproductive health
Smoking can reduce sexual performance by decreasing blood flow to the genitals in both men and women. It can also affect sperm health in men due to DNA damage and affect the proper development of the foetus in pregnant women.
Smoking increases the risk of certain diseases and can reduce the quality of life. It really doesn’t matter whether the cigarette is fresh or stale. If you plan to enjoy a happier life, making efforts to reduce and quit smoking may be one of the most important steps you can take.