ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Asthmatics Who Quit Smoking May Reverse Lung Damage
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Hypnosis Cuts Hot Flashes for Breast Cancer Survivors
Meditation May Boost Short-Term Visual Memory
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Vitamin C Protects Some Elderly Men From Bone Loss
Extra Pounds in Mid-Life Affect Later Mobility
CANCER
Antioxidants Pose No Melanoma Threat
More Cancer Tests Mean More False-Positive Results
Where You Live May Affect Your Cancer Diagnosis
CAREGIVING
UV Lights, Fans May Curb TB Spread in Hospitals
Babies Born in High Pollen Months at Wheezing Risk
Omega-3 Fatty Acid May Help 'Preemie' Girls' Brains
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Health Tip: Are You Anemic?
Firefighters Have Narrower-Than-Normal Arteries, Study Finds
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
COSMETIC
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
DENTAL, ORAL
Gummy Bears Join Cavity Fight
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Gum Disease Treatment Doesn't Cut Preterm Birth Risk
DIABETES
Patients' Photos Help Boost Radiologists' Accuracy
Coffee, Tea Might Stave Off Diabetes
Diabetes Linked to Cognitive Problems
DIET, NUTRITION
Soluble Fiber, But Not Bran, Soothes Irritable Bowel
Asparagus May Ease Hangover
Licorice May Block Absorption of Organ Transplant Drug
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
As Earth Warms, Lyme Disease Could Flourish
Years of Exposure to Traffic Pollution Raises Blood Pressure
Warmer-Than-Average Temperatures Raise Migraine Risk
EYE CARE, VISION
Clues Found to Brain Mechanism Behind Migraines
Green Tea May Ward Off Eye Disease
Unconscious Learning: In the Eye of the Beholder?
FITNESS
Basketball Star Details His Struggle With Gout
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Maximize Your Run
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
GENERAL HEALTH
Go To Work But Skip The Car
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Kids With Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Heart Trouble
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
E-Mailing Your Way to Healthier Habits
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Omega-3, Some Omega-6 Fatty Acids Boost Cardiovascular Health
Polyunsaturated Fats Really May Lower Heart Risk
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Obese Children More Likely to Suffer Lower Body Injuries
Too Many Infants Short on Vitamin D
Health Tip: Back Pain in Children
MEN'S HEALTH
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
MENTAL HEALTH
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes
SENIORS
Video Gaming Just Might Fight Aging
Mediterranean Diet Plus Exercise Lowers Alzheimer's Risk
For a Healthier Retirement, Work a Little
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
Sleeping Could Help Women Lose The Baby Fat
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
Flame-Retardant Chemical Linked to Conception Problems
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Add your Article

Women Smokers Lose 14.5 Years Off Life Span

THURSDAY, Nov. 27 (HealthDay News) -- During Lung Cancer Awareness Month in November, female smokers should take advantage of available resources, pick a quit day, and start taking steps toward kicking the habit, urges The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG).

Even though smoking takes an average of 14.5 years off women's lives, almost one in five American women age 18 and older smokes.

"The damaging effects of smoking on women are extensive, well-documented, and can be observed from the cradle to the premature grave," Dr. Sharon Phelan said in an organization news release. She helped develop ACOG's smoking cessation materials for health care providers.

"Smoking is a harmful habit that negatively affects nearly every organ in the body. There's just no good reason not to quit," she said.

Here's a list of the dangers:

* Smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death in women. Since 1950, lung cancer deaths among women have increased more than 600 percent, according to ACOG.
* Smoking also significantly increases the risk of many other cancers in women, including breast, oral, pharynx, larynx, esophageal, pancreatic, kidney, bladder, uterine, and cervical cancers.
* Women who smoke are twice as likely to develop coronary heart disease and 10 times more likely to die from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) than nonsmokers.
* Smoking increases the risk of emphysema, bronchitis, osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis, cataracts, lower bone density after menopause, and hip fracture. It can also contribute to early menopause, gum disease, tooth loss, and premature skin aging.
* Reproductive-age women who smoke may have trouble conceiving, and pregnant women who smoke are at high risk of delivering preterm or low birth weight infants or having babies with poor lung function, bronchitis or asthma.
* Women over age 35 who smoke and take birth control pills are at risk for developing deadly blood clots.

"Pregnant women should absolutely not smoke, and smoking should not be allowed in the home after a baby is born," Phelan said. "Unfortunately, we know that infants and young children are more heavily exposed to secondhand smoke than adults, and parents, guardians, or other members of the household often smoke around them."

Almost 60 percent of children ages 3 to 11 are exposed to secondhand smoke, which puts them at increased risk for a wide range of health problems.

More information

The American Cancer Society has more about women and smoking.



-- Robert Preidt



SOURCE: The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, news release, Nov. 3, 2008

Last Updated: Nov. 27, 2008

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