Nicotine Addiction Prevention And Prognosis
Posted By HealthcareOnTime Team
Posted on 2022-03-09
WHAT IS NICOTINE?
It is a chemical substance which is found in tobacco leaves and it acts as a botanical insecticide. Amazingly,
this natural insecticide is similar to a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine and once inside our brain it
initiates the release of dopamine, which gives the sense of satisfaction.
The various combustible forms of tobacco products are cigarettes, cigars, pipes, bidis while, non-
combustible tobacco products are chewing tobacco, ground and powdered forms. In India, bidis are the
most used type of tobacco product .
HOW DOES NICOTINE WORK?
The time taken by nicotine to reach blood stream is just 4 seconds and it reaches brain in about
7 seconds from the moment you inhale tobacco smoke. It is a small molecule and can cross the
blood brain barrier. Once through, it gets associated with acetylcholine receptors and stimulates
EFFECTS OF NICOTINE
It has been reported that nicotine can alleviate anxiety, Depression and pain. Due to these reasons,
smokers often report that smoking is a stress reliever and that they are more apt to smoke in response
to stressful situations or negative moods. Also, it improves mood and many smokers feel a sense of well
It has been found to affect metabolism by decreasing the appetite and increasing the metabolic rate. Thus,
weight control and appetite reduction
effects of nicotine has appealed to women and girls, to take up smoking. Nicotine also leads to an increase
in blood pressure, heart rate, constriction of arteries and stimulation of the central nervous system.
It may also cause sweating, nausea and diarrhea.
Addiction is a term used to describe maladaptive drug
seeking behaviour, even after knowing the negative consequences and nicotine meets the criteria for
a drug that can produce addiction, specifically, dependence and withdrawal. Addiction to nicotine
develops over time. It does not happen quickly after using tobacco once or twice. Also, most people
get addicted to nicotine if they had started smoking during adolescence.
Another side-effect of nicotine is withdrawal symptoms which can be noticed within 2-3 hours after
last use of tobacco. Also, people
who have smoked a greater number
of cigarettes or have smoked for
the longest duration are more likely
to show withdrawal symptoms.
For those who are quitting,
symptoms will be at peak after
Common symptoms include:
- Craving for nicotine
- Drowsiness or trouble in sleep-ing
- Feeling tense, restless or frust-
- Increased appetite and weight
- Problems in concentrating
Some or all of the above symptoms may be noticed when switching from regular to low-nicotine cigarettes or
cut down on the number of cigarettes smoked.
ESTIMATION OF NICOTINE
Nicotine inhaled through smoking is metabolised into six primary metabolites by liver
and subse- quently excreted in the urine. Cotinine is found to be a reliable biomarker
and indicator for nicotine use, detectable in the blood, urine and saliva.
PREVENTION OF NICOTINE
Even though it is difficult to discontinue the intake of nicotine
all at once there are many ways to quit. It might be difficult to quit alone but taking help of your
family members, friends and coworkers may be supportive. Nicotine replacement therapy may also be
Sense of discouragement seeps in when people who are trying to quit are not able to succeed at first. Research
shows that the more you try, the more likely you are to succeed - so don't give up! If you aren't successful the
first time you try to quit, look at what worked or didn't work, think of new ways to quit intake of nicotine &
try again. Many attempts are often needed to finally break the habit.
There are many more reasons to quit using
tobacco and serious health risks associated with it is one of them. Although not always easy, the solution remains
simple... no nicotine today!