Smoking and back pain don’t go together at all – would you believe it if someone told you that smoking causes decay of spinal discs? And as a smoker your chances of developing pain are already 2.7 times more than non-smokers!
But once you develop back pain due to some problem with your spine, know that smoking interferes with your body’s natural healing abilities… If you don’t believe it, read on…
How smoking will affect your back?
Smoking affects the back in a number of ways. Here are the details for you…
Smoking releases Carbon Ammoniate in your blood. This decreases the supply of nutrition to your tissues.
Smoking causes atherosclerosis, a condition where plaque or other material builds up on the inner walls of your arteries or blood vessels. This decreases blood flow especially in very small vessels like the ones that connect to your spine. This affects the spinal discs’ ability to heal.
Cigarettes contain nicotine. This affects you in two ways:
i. Nicotine will make osteoblasts less active. Osteoblasts are a sort of bone cell that repairs your spine. Therefore, your body is not able to deal with the normal wear and tear of the spine, and this can lead to osteoporosis.
ii. Nicotine also makes the walls of your blood vessels thicker. This means that your vessels are carrying less blood to your spine, and slowing down the healing process.
When you smoke you also inhale carbon monoxide. In large quantities it is poisonous to humans. But the little you inhale mixes with your blood, decreasing the capacity of your blood to carry oxygen. This decreases oxygen, an essential component for healing, in all parts of your body – cells, ligaments, bones, tissues.
If the oxygen depletion to your spine becomes prolonged, it can lead to permanent damage like small cracks and even disk rupture!
Finally, this may seem unbelievable, but smoking also chemically interferes with the pain detection mechanism of your body. Smokers are known to feel much greater pain, as smoking inhibits those hormones which help your body to deal with pain!
So the next time you reach for your cigarettes, pay heed to the warning printed on the box and give your body a chance to repair your spinal discs before it’s too late…
Now that you are aware of the facts, will you let this silent killer take its toll on your back? Or will you take control of your life and kick nicotine and smoking out? Exercise and improve your diet and your body will reward you with its amazing healing qualities!