Smoking is the greatest cause of early death in the UK. If you smoke, it is not just that you are likely to die earlier. Smoking-related diseases such as lung cancer, heart disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) can cause distressing symptoms, often for several years before death. In addition, other diseases such as asthma, other lung diseases, Raynaud''s phenomenon, and osteoporosis are often made worse by smoking. Male smokers have an increased chance of becoming impotent in middle age (due to the damaging effect of smoking on the blood vessels). Also, on average, children who live with smokers have more illnesses than children who live in a smoke-free home.