Why smoking is an addiction?
New imaging studies of the smokers show that nicotine causes the addiction. A few puffs of cigarette can exert a force powerful enough for the individual to continue smoking. For this reason we see people become chain smokers. According to Archives of General Psychiatry, the drug therapies of smoking cessation need to be extremely potent to compete with nicotine. Only one puff of cigarette can occupy 30% of brains common type of nicotine receptors. Studies show that 3 puffs can occupy about 70%.
Nicotine is the principal alkaloid of tobacco, occurring throughout the plant but mostly in the leaves.
It is a heterocyclic compound, containing a pyridine ring; its chemical formula is C10H14N. Nicotine is thechief addictive ingredient (see drug addiction) in cigarettes and cigars and in snuff. It has a unique biphasic effect: Inhaled in short puffs it is a stimulant, but when inhaled slowly and deeply it can be a tranquilizer. In larger doses, nicotine is a highly toxic poison, used as an insecticide, fumigant, and vermifuge.
Despite social and medical arguments against tobacco use, the habit has spread worldwide. Nicotine and related alkaloids furnish the psychoactive effects and, along with tar (a residue containing resins and other by-products), the negative health effects. Those effects include lung cancer, oral and throat cancers, heart disease, stroke, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, and macular degeneration. Smoking also increases the effects of other risk factors (see asbestosis). Passive smoking (breathing the smoke from others’ cigarettes) increases nonsmokers’ risk of lung cancer and the risk of sudden infant death syndrome. Self-help and doctor-run programs, along with nicotine patches and gums that provide diminishing doses of nicotine, are among the aids available to help those who wish to quit smoking. Antismoking campaigns have greatly reduced smoking in the U.S. even as it rises in many other countries.
Nicotine taken during smoking acts as a mood elevator. To a smoker, it is a great stimulant. When I have asked someone why are you smoking, they cannot say the reason. The answer I find is the addiction.