PET scans suggest individuals who score high on personality characteristics such as hostility and aggression are more stimulated by a dose of nicotine and thus may be more likely to begin and continue smoking
Adolescents who score high on “novelty seeking” are more receptive to tobacco company advertisements
When a cigarette is inhaled, nicotine reaches the brain from the lungs within 7 seconds. By comparison, it takes 14 seconds for blood to flow from the arm to the brain when a drug is injected intravenously
The effects of nicotine can be observed rapidly because its distribution half-life is only 10-20 minutes
The speed of absorption and distribution is one reason why smokers reach for a cigarette so soon after they have finished their last one
In 1988 the U.S. Surgeon General’s Office issued a full report with the conclusion that physical dependence on nicotine develops and that the drug is addicting
Studies had shown this for some time
Common symptoms reported by smokers 24 hours after they stopped smoking included craving for tobacco, followed in order by irritability, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, restlessness, increased appetite, impatience, somatic complaints, and insomnia
Chronic or long-term use is associated with life-threatening diseases such as coronary heart disease, cancers of the larynx, oral cavity, esophagus, bladder, pancreas, kidney and lungs, and chronic obstructive lung disease such as emphysema
Emphysema – Disease of the lung characterized by abnormal dilution of its air spaces and distension of its walls. Frequently heart action is impaired
Relapse – A term from physical disease; return to a previous state of illness from one of health. As applied to smoking, it means the smoker resumes smoking after having abstained for some amount of time.
Though most people stop smoking without help, formal treatment is generally considered worthwhile due to the fact that the people who did quit smoking only did so after multiple attempts
A 2005 follow-up study showed that 21% of adult smokers who had received intensive smoking cessation therapy 14.5 years earlier sustained their stopped-smoking status compared to only 5% of individuals who had not received the treatment.
It seems that if smoking treatments increase the rate of smoking cessation compared to what people do on their own, then they would be more than worth their cost.
Behavioral programs teach smokers to identify situations that presented a “high risk” for them to smoke, to apply techniques to weaken the habit components of smoking, to teach coping responses in high risk situations, and to teach smokers to self-monitor their smoking behavior
Nicotine replacement therapies involve the administration of nicotine to smokers as part of the effort to help them quit. The nicotine comes in the form of gum, patches, nasal spray, and inhaler
Some studies support the hypothesis that women have a more difficult time quitting smoking than men because their smoking is more affected by nonnicotine factors and thus longer-term effectiveness of NRT required more intensive behavioral support.
The antidepressant Bupropion (Welbutrin) has been successful in the treatment of nicotine dependence independent of a history of depression. This would explain why other antidepressants such as fluoxetine (Prozac) have not been effective.
The best way to stop people from using nicotine is to continue with the informational campaigns along with “macro-environmental” methods such as banning smoking in public places, new treatments at work sites, and brief behavioral or nicotine replacement treatment delivered in the medical care setting as they have also been credited with reducing the prevalence of smoking and other use of tobacco among U.S. adults.