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Tobacco, alcohol, drugs


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The smoke from cigarettes contains many toxic substances. Smoking can cause all sorts of harm and diseases. You can become addicted to smoking, but it is possible to stop.

Två fimpade cigaretter. Illustration.

Cigarettes contain tobacco, which is a dried leaf. Tobacco contains the toxic substance nicotine. There are also many other toxic substances in cigarettes.

Smoking increases the risk of harm and diseases such as cancer.

Tobacco is also used in Swedish snuff (snus), cigars, cigarillos, pipes and water pipes. E-cigarettes also often contain nicotine.

Tobacco or nicotine products cannot be sold to people under the age of 18. This law is in place to protect young people.

Why do people smoke?

Some people smoke because they think it tastes good, or feels festive or cool. Others smoke to calm themselves down, for example when they’re worried or stressed. However, smoking doesn’t actually make you feel calm, rather making you feel more stressed. There are other, better ways of dealing with stress and worry.

You might feel like trying to smoke out of curiosity. You might want to smoke to look grown up or independent. Or you might smoke because lots of other people do it.

Almost nobody likes the taste, the first time they smoke. It can make you feel ill or dizzy. 

En person säger till en annan: "Har du provat?". Det andra svarar "Nej, det luktar äckligt." Personer som röker i bakgrunden.

Smoking is addictive

You can easily become addicted to smoking. Addiction is when the body gets used to having something and wants to have it again. It then feels extra hard to continue on, without  having a smoke.

Smoking is bad for your health

You’ll notice a few things happening to your body soon after you begin smoking.

  • Your teeth will become yellower.
  • You’ll cough more.
  • You’ll get more pimples.
  • You’ll become less fit.
  • You’ll get a sore throat and you’ll be ill more often.
  • You’ll find it more difficult to get an erect penis, or your vagina will be less wet when you’re aroused.

Smoking can cause harm and disease

When you smoke, you increase the risk of getting among other things, diseases of the heart and lungs. Around half of smokers die earlier than they would have if they hadn’t smoked.

Many people know the dangers of smoking, but they do it anyway. You might personally think that you won’t get any of the diseases, or that you’ll stop smoking soon.

Don't smoke when you're pregnant

If you smoke during pregnancy, the baby growing inside you takes in the toxic substances from the cigarettes. There is a risk that your baby will be seriously harmed, will be born too early or die in the womb. This applies during the whole of the pregnancy. Stop smoking if you’re planning to have a baby.

Being around people who are smoking is also harmful

You breathe in toxic substances when you’re near people who are smoking, for example if you are in the same room as them. This can cause the same kind of harm and disease that actual smokers risk getting.

Children are particularly sensitive to smoke from cigarettes. You should therefore never smoke around children.

It is illegal to smoke in restaurants, cafés, workplaces, schoolyards, outside hospitals and many other places.

Do you want to stop smoking?

Everyone can stop smoking. Some people find it easy. Others find it hard to quit, even if they want to.

Read our tips on how to stop smoking.

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