Understanding The Tobacco Addiction

Cigarettes do more harm than pollution

Tobacco smoking is one of the world’s ever-growing health problems. Every year around 8 million people die due to diseases caused by smoking. This number has been troublingly increasing year on year.

According to Our World In Data, a think-tank, this major health problem has been the cause of 100 million premature deaths in the 20th century alone. Chewing tobacco and cigarettes play a prominent role in these numbers.

How It Starts

Tobacco addiction begins with tobacco products, such as cigarettes, cigars, or smokeless tobacco.

Learn more: The nicotine contained in these products is addictive and can cause psychological dependence. When an individual uses tobacco, the nicotine present in the product is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream and travels to the brain.

The dopamine it releases creates pleasurable and satisfying feelings once it activates the reward centers. As the individual starts associating smoking or using tobacco with feelings of relaxation and pleasure, psychological dependence on tobacco can develop.

Go deeper: Repeated exposure to nicotine can change the brain, making it difficult to quit, even when the individual desires to do so. This is why quitting smoking or using tobacco can be challenging and why many people need multiple attempts to quit successfully.

As the body becomes dependent on nicotine over time, it can experience withdrawal symptoms when the person attempts to quit or reduce the use of tobacco products.

There can be irritability, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and cravings for nicotine among these symptoms.

Affects on Body

Smoking tobacco can have both short- and long-term harmful effects on the body.

Learn more: Tobacco use leads to the most preventable types of cancer worldwide. In addition to lung cancer, smoking cigarettes can cause cancers of the throat, mouth, bladder, pancreas, kidneys, and cervix.

Smoking can lead to respiratory problems such as chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and asthma. Shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing can also be caused by it.

The use of tobacco damages the heart and blood vessels, which increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease.

It weakens the immune system, making it more difficult for the body to fight infections and diseases.

Smoking can cause various oral health problems, including gum disease, tooth decay, and oral cancer.

Tobacco use during pregnancy can cause complications, including premature birth, low birth weight, and stillbirth.

Tobacco use has many harmful effects on the body, contributing to many preventable diseases and deaths worldwide.

A Way Out From Dependence

Although quitting tobacco addiction can be challenging, it is possible with the right support and strategies.

Important steps: Choosing the specific date on the calendar to quit can be a good way to start.

Pay attention to situations or activities that make you crave tobacco, such as stress, social situations, or specific times of the day.

Find healthy ways to cope with cravings, such as exercise, deep breathing, or hobbies.

Consider seeking support from family and friends or a support group to keep you accountable and encourage you. You can also speak with a healthcare professional about quitting.

Use of patches, gum, or lozenges that replace nicotine can help manage withdrawal symptoms and cravings.

Avoid spending time with people who smoke or use tobacco, and remove all tobacco products from your home, car, and workplace.

Celebrate milestones in your journey to quit, such as one day or week without tobacco.

Staying committed to the goal is the key to getting rid of addiction. Getting rid of tobacco addiction and enjoying a smoke-free life is possible with the right mindset and support.