ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Pain-Relieving Powers of Acupuncture Unclear
Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients
Acupuncture May Not Help Hot Flashes
ANIMAL CARE
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Drinking Cuts Rheumatoid Arthritis Risk
Many Americans Fall Short on Their Vitamin D
Vitamin D Plus Calcium Guards Against Fractures
CANCER
Acupuncture May Help Relieve Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Breast Self-Exam Rates Go Up With Counseling
Immune Therapy May Aid Kids With Neuroblastoma
CAREGIVING
Organ Donation Policies Vary Among Children's Hospitals
Medication Errors Could Be Cut: Experts
Hospital Practices Influence Which Moms Will Breast-Feed
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
Anemia Rates Down for U.S. Women and Children
COSMETIC
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
DENTAL, ORAL
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
Scientists Find Gene for Tooth Enamel
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
DIABETES
Vitamin K Slows Insulin Resistance in Older Men
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
Chamomile Tea May Ward Off Diabetes Damage
DIET, NUTRITION
To Feel Better, Low-Fat Diet May Be Best
Dark Chocolate May Lower Stroke Risk
Fish Oil's Benefits Remain Elusive
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Meat-Eating Dinosaurs Used Legs and Arms Like Birds
Traffic Seems to Make Kids' Asthma Worse
City Kids Find the Breathin' Is Easier Elsewhere
EYE CARE, VISION
Unconscious Learning: In the Eye of the Beholder?
Certain Diabetes Drugs May Pose Eye Risk
It's a Whole New Outlook for Cataract Patients
FITNESS
Barefoot Best for Running?
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Higher Fitness Levels Tied to Lower Heart, Death Risks
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
GENERAL HEALTH
Internet Program Helps Problem Drinkers
Cocaine Spurs Long-Term Change in Brain Chemistry
Smog Tougher on the Obese
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
E-Mailing Your Way to Healthier Habits
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
Rheumatoid Arthritis a Threat to the Heart
An Apple a Day May Help Keep Heart Disease Away
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Viral Infection Might Trigger High Blood Pressure
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Safety Should Be Priority for Those Involved in Kids' Sports
Stomach Germ May Protect Against Asthma
Standard IQ Test May Underestimate People With Autism
MEN'S HEALTH
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
How to Attack Holiday Stress Head-On
Bullying Seems to Affect Kids Years Later
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes
Woman in America Are Delaying Motherhood, Study Says
SENIORS
Martial Arts Training May Save Seniors' Hips
Laughter Can Stimulate a Dull Appetite
For Older Walkers, Faster Is Better
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Simple Carbs Pose Heart Risk for Women
Caffeine in Pregnancy Associated With Low Birth Weight Risk
Omega-3 May Reduce Endometriosis Risk
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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