Programs To Quit Smoking
When tobacco burns, it produces a mixture of gases and small particles. This mixture contains more than 4000 different types of chemicals. When smoke is inhaled, these chemicals enter the lungs. Over 50 of these chemicals are known to be carcinogenic. A carcinogenic substance is any substance that causes cancer.
Other substances found in tobacco smoke cause other types of disease The following are only some of the harmful substances that are found in tobacco smoke: hydrogen cyanide, tar, formaldehyde, benzene, carbon monoxide and many more.
One chemical that is found in tobacco smoke is nicotine. It is nicotine that is the addictive substance found in tobacco smoke. Smoking delivers nicotine that is in vapour form. Once in the lungs, nicotine is absorbed via the specialized cells making up the lungs called alveoli. Blood vessels then quickly distribute nicotine throughout the body. Within 20 seconds tobacco smoke deliveries nicotine to the brain.
When nicotine reaches the brain, it attaches itself to special sites on certain brain cells. This effect causes the cells to produce an increased amount of a substance called dopamine. The increase in dopamine is associated with a sense of pleasure. In part, it is nicotine that produces the pleasurable effects of tobacco smoke.
The addictive nature of nicotine is caused by the speed and intensity of the pleasurable experience after inhalation. Once smokers discover pleasure due to smoking, they seek to reproduce the same effect repeatedly. The experience of pleasure reinforces the continuation of smoking because of the resulting reward.
However, once smokers use cigarettes regularly, there is a need to continue to smoke in order to maintain a certain level of nicotine in the body. Smokers generally need a certain amount of nicotine just to function normally, otherwise they may experience withdrawal symptoms.
Nicotine is broken down or metabolized in the body fairly quickly. About every 2 hours, half the nicotine is broken down by the body and eliminated. This causes the level of nicotine to drop from the level that the body has become accustomed to. Smokers continue to smoke in order to maintain the amount of nicotine at the level that their body requires. Otherwise, smokers will experience withdrawal symptoms.
This effect is most noticeable after a night's sleep. If a smoker does not wake up during the night to smoke, her nicotine level drops significantly. A decrease in nicotine from the level that the person needs to simply function causes her to experience withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms can be both physical and mental.
The following are some symptoms of withdrawal symptoms that smokers report when they stop smoking:
- Irritability or aggression
- Poor concentration
- Increased appetite
- And craving for cigarettes
Many of these symptoms are, at first, subtle. They do, however, become more pronounced when the level of nicotine decreases once smokers stop smoking, or are unable to smoke over an extended period of time.
Such withdrawal symptoms cause smokers to experience cravings to smoke in order to increase the level of nicotine in their body. Smokers, therefore, continue to smoke in order to avoid discomfort due to the various withdrawal symptoms caused by a decrease in the nicotine level in their body.
In the process of consuming nicotine, smokers also consume 4000 other compounds that are found in tobacco smoke including at least 50 which are known to cause cancer and over 150 other chemicals that cause other diseases and poor health.
Therefore, the consumption of nicotine by smoking is a contaminated way that smokers consume nicotine. Aside from the addictive nature of nicotine, nicotine per se does not cause any of the known diseases mentioned earlier. Nevertheless, nicotine is considered by the medical profession to be one of the most addictive substances known to humans. To find out more, you can check out Programs To Quit Smoking.