Author Archive: Tracey West

How to Quit Smoking


Smoking is a habit that begins easily depending on the environment that one is in. Some of the triggers of being addicted to smoking include the company one keeps, the rules that govern the life they lead, as well as low economic status. The presumption that tobacco helps a person to reduce their stress levels will make them want to smoke to relax and ease anxiety. To understand the mental effects of quitting smoking one needs to learn the reasons behind the addiction to smoking.

The Chain Effect

cigarette butts

When someone begins to smoke, the body adapts to the charge of nicotine that it receives seconds after the first puff. Nicotine is known to activate production of dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is the molecule that controls the reward centers of the brain. These centers are associated with feelings of reward, attention, mood, and memory among others. When someone feels low and puffs on a cigarette, this is the effect that takes place with dopamine being produced.

Breaking the Chain Effect

The downside to using nicotine to produce dopamine is the brain lags behind in dopamine production without the nicotine trigger. This makes it necessary to smoke to get dopamine produced. That is one of the greatest reasons why smokers get addicted to smoking as their brains become dependent on nicotine. To restore normal brain function and dopamine production, it is necessary to quit smoking.

Schizophrenia Management

People who have schizophrenia are believed to benefit from smoking. This is because it alleviates some of the symptoms associated with this mental condition. These symptoms include disorganized speech, low moods, anxiety, and anger. These are the same symptoms that can be alleviated by the production of dopamine. This makes sense why a person who has schizophrenia will become addicted to cigarettes.

Five Ways to Help Quit Smoking

chain smoker

  • To be able to endure the difficult journey of quitting smoking, it is best to be prepared for the withdrawal symptoms. These symptoms include craving cigarettes, anxiety and irritability, nausea, and headaches. Staying hydrated and packed up with foods rich in fiber and vitamins helps to ease these adverse withdrawal effects.
  • The second way to help quit is to have a support system of those around you. These include your family and friends who support the goal of quitting smoking. They can keep a close watch on you and be an encouragement to you.
  • The third way is to join a talking therapy group where you are a group desiring to quit together. Here, there is a great understanding among members as you are going through the same problem.
  • The fourth way is to avoid triggers that will have you desiring cigarettes. These include cigarettes themselves and anything that is nicotine laden. Avoid caffeine, and any other triggers that you know have gotten you lighting a cigarette.
  • The fifth way is to find different ways that can help you deal with the stress, anxiety, and depression. This will lead to a lack of dependence on nicotine.

Side Effects Of Smoking Tobacco

Not long ago, tobacco companies touted the ‘benefits’ of smoking tobacco. These were things like ‘tobacco is natural’ and ‘breathe more oxygen’. However, today, it’s pretty obvious that tobacco kills. Research and the body of evidence from clinical, experimental, pathological, and epidemiological studies have established that smoking causes serious side effects and even death.

Scientists have calculated that you reduce your lifespan by approximately 10 minutes by smoking one cigarette. So, if you smoke 20 cigarettes a day, you reduce your lifespan by three years after 20 years. Despite the decades of research and lots of evidence, many people still believe they can escape this trauma.

Here are the additional side effects of smoking tobacco

Causes cancer

zxcvbnmjkkTobacco smoke contains nicotine, one of the most dangerous chemicals in existence. Nicotine is more poisonous than rattlesnake venom, cyanide and arsenic. In addition to this, cigarettes have more than 200 poisons and more than 4,000 chemicals. These chemicals turn organs such as kidney, liver, and pancreas as toxic waste dumps, and have been linked to cancers of the abdomen, mouth, kidney, esophagus, and many other cancers.

Lung disease

Carbon monoxide from cigarette smoke replaces the oxygen content in your blood and increases your chances of getting a deadly lung disease know as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Smoking annihilates your lung tissues and significantly decimates your aerobic endurance.

Affects your brain

Direct exposure to chemicals and lack of oxygen causes significant damage to your brain. While nicotine causes addiction, the actual habit of smoking is one of the most addictive habits known to man. It makes almost every emotion you feel; anything you do become associated with smoking tobacco.

Affects your looks

Smokers look older than their actual age. Nicotine causes a reduction of blood flow to your skin, resulting in wrinkles. Smoking attacks the collagen in your skin (responsible for giving you a youthful glow) and gives your skin an ashy or a yellow look.

Tooth loss

cvbnbnnm,Smoking corrodes the teeth, gums, and olfactory organs. Researchers have established that smokers have a higher odd of losing their teeth than non-smokers. While the risk declines after quitting smoking, the risk continues to about 30 years after cessation.

Other side effects

Some other side effects of smoking tobacco include destructing of joint tissues, infertility, the annihilation of red blood cells, and damage to the immune system. Research also shows that smoking tobacco weakens your hair strands, and this your hair to break and turn gray before it’s time.