01 February 2016

Smoking as a Harmful Addiction

Tobacco was imported to Europe in 16th century. Frenchman Jean Nicot (nicotine was called by his name) brought tobacco to France and then tobacco got to England. Like tea, coffee and opium, tobacco was one of other intoxicants that originally used in medicine. Indians believed that tobacco was a present from God and used to smoke it in holy ceremonies, or to fix a deal. They smoked since childhood and applied tobacco mixed with some plants to heal from cold, asthma and tuberculosis.

It is estimated that about 1.22 billion people smoke nowadays. And although everyone knows that smoking is a harmful addiction, only few people are aware how dangerous it is. Tobacco contains nicotine - psychoactive drug, which is highly addictive and acts as a stimulant and depressant at the same time. Nicotine serves as an appetite suppressant as well.

Nicotine produces structural and functional changes in the body. While smoker try to quit smoking, some symptoms like headaches, irritability, insomnia probably will appear. This is called withdrawal syndrome. It takes time for the body and mind to recover from addiction. In fact, nicotine acts similar to heroin and cocaine and affects the same area of the brain.

Nicotine promotes to enhance the level of glucose in blood and producing of insulin. Long-term smokers are under the increasing risk of such diseases as diabetes, lung cancer, emphysema, and chronic bronchitis; as well pregnancy-related problems; tooth and gum diseases; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Many smokers experience those painful illnesses, take medicines and still smoking.

The passive smoking is considered to entail cancer and is a cause for about 3,000 lung cancer deaths of nonsmoking people each year. Smoking of parents affects the function of lungs of newborn babies and this can persist during the whole life. It is estimated that about four million children a year get sick from passive smoking.

Most smokers want to give up smoking but only small percent of smokers succeed in it. It's not really very difficult and anyone can manage with it if he does it by the right way. If you decide to quit smoking, don't give up! There are many methods to stop smoking. Families, relatives and friends can support, but the desire and commitment to quit smoking must be your own. In case you join some quit smoking programs, you have a better chance to succeed. Those programs combine different strategies, including friend support and ways to overcome relapse problems.