A person becomes addicted to cigarettes due to the quick action of nicotine in the brain’s pleasure centers. When you smoke a cigarette, nicotine enters the bloodstream and in 15 to 20 seconds starts working on the brain.
Nicotine binds to receptors of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter. This causes a change in cell walls that allow calcium ions or sodium enters the cell and cause brain neurotransmitters are released. These affect mood and behavior. Dopamine produces feelings of happiness and satisfaction. Serotonin helps moderate mood and controls appetite. The gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA) manufactures a composing effect that reduces unease.
Smoking is an artificial environment that causes a feeling of contentment, peace and moderation in their mood. Because of these positive effects and the speed with which they are associated with nicotine, smoking is highly addictive.
Or an occasional smoker, you can start using cigarettes as a means to cope with the stresses of everyday life and can change social smoker Regular smoker. Once you start smoking more cigarettes per day, nicotine stimulates your brain constantly, 24 hours a day and becomes psychologically addicted to the positive effects of nicotine.
After smoking for years, a transition begins to occur in the mechanism of addiction, the brain becomes used to the presence of nicotine and physically modified to increase the concentration thereof and increasingly requires greater amount to function correctly. That is, the brain becomes dependent on nicotine for normal functions, resulting in tolerance to nicotine.
When the brain is unable to obtain the necessary amount of nicotine experience withdrawal symptoms, including irritability, agitation, trouble getting along with relations and contacts, insomnia, anxiety, depression, hunger, lethargy and difficulty concentrating.
Half the nicotine is metabolized in the body and discarded every 2 hours. As the level decreases nicotine withdrawal symptoms appear and the only way to alleviate is another dose of nicotine. Now smoke, not for pleasure, but to eliminate withdrawal symptoms.
Like any addict, the smoker often need their first dose of nicotine as soon as possible. Many smokers light up their first cigarette within 5 minutes after waking.
Throughout the day, they need extra doses of nicotine, usually every couple of hours and are often willing to leave the comfort and face the cold, rain or sweltering heat to get the next dose of nicotine. When this happens, they are definitely in the second stage of addiction to nicotine.
In general, smoking begins as a psychological addiction to the positive effects of nicotine in the brain. But because the brain adapts to nicotine, smoking addiction becomes a means to prevent the negative effects of withdrawal.