Nicotine Dependency – An Evil in Disguise

nicotine addiction

Nicotine addiction can be defined as a compulsive dependency on the drug nicotine which is mostly found in cigarettes and cigars. When you take a puff of a cigarette,, nicotine and some other harmful substances enter your lungs, from where they get absorbed into the blood. It just takes a couple of seconds for nicotine to get attached to the brain receptors and give fleeting pleasure to the smoker. The feeling of pleasure decreases as there is a drop in nicotine levels, making the smoker anxious and restless. In order to get rid of the agitation, the smoker lights up and the sequence continues until the person gets completely addicted to nicotine.

Effects of Nicotine on body

  • Nicotine strongly affects your heart and arteries as it increases your heart rate and blood pressure. As a result, the risk of a stroke or heart attack increases to the maximum level.
  • Since nicotine binds with brain receptors, it can cause some chemical changes such as faintness and poor sleeping patterns.
  • Nicotine can also have a negative impact on the production of pigments in the eye which can lead to poor vision in the long term.
  • Nicotine can also constrict the arteries which can cause trouble in the circulation of blood throughout your body, and may be a cause of erectile dysfunction (impotence) in men. Women can also face the risk of infertility and miscarriage.
  • Over a period of time it can also weaken your immune system due to which you get more susceptible to disease.
  • One of the biggest possibilities of nicotine addiction is cancer, since it does not allow your body to dispose of the damaged cells.
  • Nicotine can bring significant changes in your cellular structures which can result in weakening of your bones.

Withdrawal symptoms

It is quite obvious to think that if smoking can lead to so many harmful changes in your body then it is better to quit it. However, the common obstacle in giving up smoking is the experience of withdrawal symptoms. You are expected to experience nicotine withdrawal symptoms within a few hours of smoking the last cigarette. The most common withdrawal symptoms include:

  • Anxiety, agitation and restlessness
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Irritability
  • Tingling of fingers
  • Depression

Giving up smoking

Fortunately now it is possible to get rid of smoking addiction with the help of medical guidance and support from family. Some of the common methods available are:

  • Counselling: You can opt for behavioural counselling which is specifically intended to help you quit smoking and overcome the withdrawal symptoms.
  • Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT): NRT works by providing your body with doses of nicotine (for example using nicotine patches) after you quit smoking. This helps in minimising the occurrence of withdrawal symptoms and the urge to smoke again.
  • Medication: These days you can also take the help of prescription medications. You can quit smoking with Champix tablets, which is one of the effective treatments to stop smoking. Champix is a 12 week treatment, but you may start witnessing positive results within the first two weeks.

Comments

  1. Lisa says

    Great message and graphic. Education is so important to recovery, regardless of your substance. If we understood what we were really doing, we’d truly do something different. Thank you for posting this important topic. Thanks Courtney for sharing this link with me.

  2. Lisa says

    Great message and graphic. Education is so important to recovery, regardless of your substance. If we understood what we were really doing, we’d truly do something different. Thank you for posting this important topic. Thanks Courtney for sharing this link with me.

  3. Lisa says

    Great message and graphic. Education is so important to recovery, regardless of your substance. If we understood what we were really doing, we’d truly do something different. Thank you for posting this important topic. Thanks Courtney for sharing this link with me.

  4. Lisa says

    Great message and graphic. Education is so important to recovery, regardless of your substance. If we understood what we were really doing, we’d truly do something different. Thank you for posting this important topic. Thanks Courtney for sharing this link with me.

  5. harleyrider1978 says

    Study says smokers are not addicted to nicotine

    Craving for cigarettes is more to do with the mind than the addictive influence of nicotine. In other words, it is the psychological element of smoking that makes one addicted to cigarettes, a new study conducted by Israeli scientists has revealed.

    The psychological element of smoking is the key factor deciding the intensity of craving for cigarettes in a smoker compared to the physiological effects of nicotine as an addictive chemical, says Dr. Reuven Dar of Tel Aviv University’s Department of Psychology.

    “These findings might not be popular with advocates of the nicotine addiction theory, because they undermine the physiological role of nicotine and emphasize mind over matter when it comes to smoking,” says Dr. Dar, in his new study published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology.

    Dr. Reuven Dar and his colleagues reached these conclusions after analyzing the data from two landmark studies.

    The researchers monitored smoking behavior and craving levels of in-flight attendants, both women and men, who worked at the Israeli airline El Al. They were monitored during two flights — a long flight of between 10 to 13 hours like Tel Aviv to New York and a two-hop shorter trip from Israel to Europe and back, each leg lasting three to five hours.

    The study team then analyzed the responses of the El Al staff to a questionnaire and found that the duration of the flight had no significant impact on craving levels. In fact it was similar for short and long flights. Moreover, craving levels at the end of each short flight were much higher than those at the end of the long flight. This showed that cravings increased in anticipation of the flight landing, whatever the flight’s total duration.

    Therefore, the craving effect is produced by psychological reasons rather than by the physiological effects of nicotine deprivation.

    A similar study conducted in 2005 amongst religious Jews, forbidden by their religion to smoke on the Sabbath, also found nicotine to be not addictive as physiological addictions are usually defined.

    It is not that nicotine plays no role. The chemical does have a physiological role in increasing cognitive abilities such as attention and memory, it’s not an addictive substance like heroin, which creates true systemic and biologically-based withdrawal symptoms in the body of the user, Dr Dar says.

    He believes the latest research will help clinicians and health authorities develop more successful smoking cessation programs than those utilizing expensive nicotine patches or gum.

    http://www.medicaldaily.com/study-says-smokers-are-not-addicted-nicotine-231158

  6. D. McGahan says

    Its not the nicotine that causes the disease in people. Its the smoking combustible tobacco. This is so far off from the truth its sad. If this was true then those that use NRTs would also have problems, which they don’t.
    Nicotine has been studied over and over, and it does not cause cancer, high blood pressure or any of the other things portrayed here. Nicotine by its self is not as addictive as once thought. Its when burning tobacco with all the chemicals make it much more addictive.

    Nicotine have some very beneficial attributes. There are studies with nicotine patches used in people with alzheimers, and other neurological diseases and they have found that nicotine helps slow down the progression. They have also found that less people that smoke have alzheimers than people that have never smoked. Nicotine is not the evil chemical its the burning tobacco and the 4000+ chemicals in the burning tobacco that is.

    This is bad propaganda.

    Champix on the other hand have caused people to go crazy, kill other or them selves.

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