Bad habits and their impact on a human’s health | Herzliya Medical Center

Any person either has or had unpleasant habits. Some people try to get rid of them, others managed to accustom themselves to a full life without bad habits, while another group of people does not even think about getting rid of them and start living in a healthy manner. In this article, we will discuss bad habits and their negative impact on human’ health.

The category of bad habits includes those habits that both, harm human health and restrict a person from the full use of his abilities throughout his life. The most dangerous habits are those, who were obtained at a relatively immature age and to get rid of which a person is not capable of. Such habits cause considerable damage to human existence – loss of potential and motivation, premature aging of the human body and the acquisition of diseases of various kinds. Such habits include the consumption of the following killing substances: tobacco, alcohol, drugs, toxic and psychotropic substances. However, there also exist less dangerous, yet unhealthy habits, such as computer or smartphone dependency; harmful diet, including diets for losing weight and consumption of fatty products that cause obesity; the habit of not getting enough sleep – not letting your body to rest at least 8 hours a day; gambling; undisciplined sex life, which provokes various sexually transmitted diseases; uncontrolled use of medicines… etc.

Alcohol abuse

Alcohol refers to a group of neuro depressants – substances that impair the activity of the brain centers. Such substances reduce the flow of oxygen into the human brain relatively strongly, because of that the brain can only function with less activity: the person experiences coordination distortion, speech inconsistency, unclear thinking, loss of concentration and attention, inability to think logically and make reasonable decisions.

The main factors that may cause alcoholism include domestic drunkenness with physical dependence on alcohol; unfavourable relations and conflicts in the family; traditions which imply alcohol consumption; unfavourable surroundings; low cultural level; high prosperity… etc. Also, many people try to express themselves with the help of alcohol.

If we talk about the negative impact of alcohol on the human body, it is worth mentioning that when alcohol is consumed, the amount of oxygen in the brain decreases, which, in the worst case, can lead to the death of brain cells – alcoholic dementia. Excessive consumption of alcohol negatively affects all systems of the human body, causing damage to the cells of the “thinking” part of the brain. In addition, consumption of alcohol leads to:

  • Cardiovascular system diseases
  • External respiration system diseases
  • Gastrointestinal pathologies
  • Distortion of the functions of the liver
  • Distortion of the functions of the kidneys
  • Psychical deviations
  • The weakening of the immune system
  • Reduction of sexual activity
  • Weakness and exhaustion of muscles

The most severe form of alcoholism is considered to be the white fever. Trembling, rapid pulse, excitement, high blood pressure, and fever are symptoms of such kind of illness. White fever is manifested as hallucinations, disorientation, obscuration of consciousness.

Moreover, alcohol consumption shortens a human’s life by 15-20 years.


Usage of tobacco products of any kind is particularly dangerous because it harms both, the smoker and the people who surround him. According to the UN data, every 13 seconds in the world because of smoking dies a person. Smoking refers to one of the forms of substance abuse, which causes chronic poisoning of the human body, developing mental and physical dependence. After smoking, nicotine, which is an integral part of all tobacco products, immediately enters the blood vessels through lung alveoli. Moreover, the smoke of tobacco also contains many toxic substances, including combustion products of tobacco leaves and substances used in processing, such as carbon monoxide, hydrocyanic acid, hydrogen sulfide, carbon dioxide, essential oils, ammonia, tobacco tar.

The use of tobacco products, as well as the use of alcohol, negatively affects all systems of the human body.

Smoking, as well as alcohol abuse negatively affects all parts of the human organism. Nicotine has an exciting effect, which eliminates the central nervous system from functioning properly. The brain receives less amount of blood with a lowered oxygen content in it, which is followed by a decrease in the mental activity of a smoker.
Smoking has also a negative impact on the respiratory system. After inhaling the smoke of tobacco, irritation of the mucous membranes of the mouth, larynx, nose, damage to trachea and bronchi start taking place. This causes airway inflammation. If a person has been smoking for a long time, he may suffer from irritation of the vocal cords, as well as narrowing of the glottis. Cough with the secretion of dark color mucus is normal for a smoker. It provokes the development of shortness of breath. Smoking is also one of the factors that cause the development of diseases, including asthma and pneumonia.
There is a substantial risk of harming the blood circulatory system when you smoke. Increased blood pressure, impaired circulation of brain cells and cardiac activity, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke, can all be caused by lighting up a cigarette. With smoking on a permanent basis, the heart begins to contract more often, which leads to a constant tension of the circulatory system.
When you smoke, the gastrointestinal tract does not function properly. That can be observed as the existence of gray coating on the tongue and an unpleasant odor from the mouth.
The digestive system is also under an attack – along with saliva, most of the toxic substances enter the stomach. The tooth enamel is being destroyed, caries is forming. The appearance of a stomach ulcer is possible.
While smoking, taste sensations of a person decrease as well as the sharpness of charm declines.
Sexual activity, especially for men around 25-40 years old, decreases.
Smoking provokes the development of cancer.

As the smoking phenomenon is getting more actual, on the purpose of getting rid of smoking tobacco, e-cigarettes have been invented. On the one hand, this invention seems to be useful. Many smokers started smoking e-cigarettes instead of tobacco. Moreover, the organism of a smoker doesn’t receive a huge amount of toxic substances, when he smokes e-cigarette instead of tobacco. On the other hand, almost every liquid for an electronic cigarette contains nicotine, which, when inhaled, immediately enters the bloodstream. With 8 or more puffs of an electronic cigarette, nicotine approaches the brain. Nicotine provokes mutations, that are in particular danger if a person wants to have children.

Furthermore, nicotine causes Buerger’s disease – a pathology that can lead to finger amputation.

Narcotic substances

In modern society, more and more people are starting to use pharmacological drugs, or simply known as drugs. The victims of which, in particular, are teenagers who use these substances for the sake of entertainment. Frequent use of pharmacological drugs causes drug dependency, a negative effect on both, human health and its social and economic situation. Regardless of the way the substance is injected into the body, all drugs harm the nervous system, the immune system, the liver, the heart, and the lungs.

Drugs are classified as opiates, psychostimulants, cannabinoids, hallucinogens, hypnotic sedatives, and volatile drugs..

Smoking hemp, hashish, marijuana… etc. provokes the formation of chronic bronchitis, lung cancer, impaired immunity system, cardiovascular insufficiency, arrhythmia, liver intoxication…
Opiate drugs are injected intravenously, that’s why, when using these substances, the risk of AIDS, syphilis, and hepatitis (B and C) is incredibly great.
Psychostimulants cause harm to the human nervous system, developing severe depression, which can lead to psychosis. They dramatically increase metabolism, heart rate, and blood pressure. Therefore, the energy for life maintenance is taken from reserve reserves of the organism that do not have time to recover, leading to the exhaustion of the body. Also, the heart condition is at risk, due to severe arrhythmia. Myocardial infarction and heart failure can take place.
With the use of hallucinogenic substances, special damage is caused to the brain. They destroy the human psyche and with frequent use may cause psychosis and irreversible damage to the psyche.
Soporiferous sedatives have a negative effect on the brain, liver and the heart of a person. They provoke insomnia, encephalopathy (brain damage), convulsive seizures, attempts to suicide, as well as diseases associated with the cardiovascular system.
Volatile drugs – inhalants, slow down the mental development of a person, destroying the activity of the cerebral cortex. Moreover, they cause damage to all organs and tissues of the body. The most terrible outcome from the use of inhalants is the so-called “death in the bag” – loss of consciousness and the inability to remove the bag from the head (when using inhalants, a person puts a bag on his head).

All narcotic substances adversely affect the next generation of parents who are drug addicts. The fetus can be born mentally retarded, with physical abnormalities.

Factors, including, the personality of a person, his temperament, social environment, as well as psychological surroundings can affect the formation of unhealthy habits. Therefore, it is necessary to choose both, your surroundings and the environment of your children carefully, in order to avoid diseases and complications discussed above. Likewise, it is worth remembering that bad habits harm not only you but also your loved ones. So, it’s worth starting to get rid of them as soon as possible!

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