Many diseases are associated with smoking. According to a recent study, smoking cigarettes or tobacco causes around six million deaths every year. Aside from this, the same research team also reveals that second-hand smoking generates an average of six hundred thousand deaths on a yearly basis. Therefore, it is only proper to conclude that even a non-smoker may still be exposed to the risks of smoking.
Approximately 37.8 million adults in the United States are said to be currently smoking cigarettes, and 16 million are living with a smoking-related illness.
Tobacco consumption is a powerful addiction because nicotine stimulates specialized neural receptors in the brain, just as all other highly addictive substances do. Most quitters fail in their initial attempt because their cravings are just too strong. — Nigel Barber Ph.D.
Though it is said that smoking has declined by almost 21 out of every 100 adults, still cigarette use is a burden to the health of not only the smoker himself but his family as well.
It was discussed in the first part of this blog that smoking could affect not just the physical fitness of a person. The mental and psychological health is also affected and in a massive way. Stress can be useful to motivate someone to be productive, but if in excess, it can cause other mental health issues like anxiety. Smoking can bring about this problem, with stress and also anxiety.
Now, we move on to other mental health effects due to smoking.
When people face a life problem, which usually is about the work or the love aspects of their lives, they typically first feel anxious. Looking ahead they feel uncertain about what if anything they can do about the problem. — Susan Heitler Ph.D.
Smoking And Depression
There is a newfound correlation between smoking and depression. Studies have found that smoking rates among adults are twice as high when diagnosed with depression. Withdrawal symptoms are more severe and prevalent in people suffering from depression, and they have a harder time dropping the habit. This mood-altering effect of nicotine has to do with how it stimulates the dopamine centers of the brain.
Dopamine, otherwise known as the happy hormone, is responsible for a person’s feeling of euphoria or happiness. Nicotine triggers its release in the brain to cause a change of mood amongst depressed individuals. There are scientific evidence and study that cigarettes are utilized as a quick dopamine fix to stave off depression. However, smoking also deactivates the brain’s facility to create its own dopamine. The result of this is that a prolonged smoking habit causes a person to be reliant exclusively on smoking to suppress their depression.
Smoking And Schizophrenia
People with schizophrenia are three times more likely to smoke than usual and are also inclined to smoke in more significant amounts. The reason being that nicotine helps to suppress their schizophrenic symptoms or side effects of medication. Schizophrenia is a severe mental health condition that can cause harm to the person who has it, and to those around the one suffering from the disease. A person with schizophrenia who also happens to be smoking, in the long run, can make it worse as the withdrawal indicators can compound with schizophrenia’s symptoms, adding complexity to a treatment.
It is well-known that smoking is much more common among people with mental illness, especially depression and schizophrenia. However, most studies that have looked at this association have not been able to determine if this is a cause-and-effect relationship. —
Dropping The Habit
The best method for stopping smoking is to start early, have a plan, and be resolute in it. Cold Turkey or completely cutting off smoking abruptly has the tendency to cause an even graver relapse since longtime smokers may not be prepared for severe withdrawal effects. Being made is still the best indicator of success, and here are some guidelines that can help.
Find Alternative Ways To Relieve The Stress
Smoking habits are reinforced due to the temporary high it provides when stress. Seek other ways to relieve stress like meditation, exercise, a hobby, and having a balanced diet.
Find A Support System
Family and friends can provide support in dropping the habit. A concerted effort can be to quit smoking with similar family members or friends and keep each other in check.
The data on quitting rates suggest that smokers are not doing themselves any good by signing up. In the case of programs that use nicotine replacement devices, they may be doing themselves harm. — Nigel Barber Ph.D.
Be Informed Of Withdrawal Symptoms And How To Go About It
Educate yourself on what withdrawal symptoms will be like and how severe. It would help to have a store of fresh fruits, clean water, and high fiber food to stave off symptoms.
Finally, if cutting the habit proves too difficult, seek out medical attention. There are therapies and nicotine replacement practices that can help ween off the addiction. Further advice can be provided by your respective doctors and can point you to services better equipped to cope with withdrawal.
Quitting smoking is the best thing you can do to improve your health, and there are many effective options available that can help someone stop smoking. — Amy Copeland, Ph.D.
Have you ever wondered why many people in your life want you to refrain from smoking? Are you interested to find out about the top reasons why they want to transform you into a non-smoker? In this article, our primary focus will be on the different reasons why your partner, family members, and friends want you to quit smoking today. It is essential to identify these reasons so that you will understand their insistence on wanting to change your bad habits. They want you to:
The effects of smoking on physical health are commonly known topics in today’s time. However, studies have shown that smoking can affect a person’s mental health and psychological capacity, as well. The effects may differ from person to person but having more comprehensive knowledge of smoking, and its impact can help in the effort to stop it for people who want to quit.
Smoking remains a leading cause of preventable illness. It causes more than 480,000 deaths per year in the United States—41,000 of which are caused by exposure to secondhand smoke. — Amy Copeland, Ph.D.
Smoking: The Addiction Cycle
It is common knowledge that a smoking habit is difficult to break, but it helps to look at the physiological reasons as to why that is so hard to do.
Much of the addiction involves developing a dependence on nicotine. When nicotine reaches the brain, there are notable positive effects in a person’s performance, at first. It improves their mood, sharpens their concentration, relieves stress, relaxes the muscles, and reduces appetite. Continued use, however, changes the brain and makes it reliant on nicotine – a restricting the brain of nicotine would then cause withdrawal symptoms. This high and lows cycle reinforces the smoking habit and fuels the addiction.
Younger people are more susceptible to nicotine dependence and addiction cycle due to a lack of impulse control or societal or environmental pressures. A diagnosed addiction can also lead to other types of addiction if the effects can hide each other’s downside. For example, withdrawal symptoms can be numbed with the use of alcohol and drugs, adding a layer of reinforced behavior that needs to be broken through.
Smoking And Its Psychological Symptoms
As mentioned, compared to the physical health aspect, new studies and research are being found regarding smoking’s mental health effects. Use of nicotine has been proven to have some mental benefits (hence the appeal) but is this still the case in prolonged use? The following are some of the findings regarding the matter.
For many folks, it’s only when they have fallen into a dark hole of hopelessness that they finally feel so bad that they reach out for professional mental health services. — Susan Heitler Ph.D.
Smoking And Stress
Stress is a common phenomenon shared by everyone; it affects us when we are made to cope with something we are unfamiliar with or what we deem unpleasant. ‘Self-Medication’ is the term used for when smoking is used to relieve stress, and there is some fact in doses of nicotine can alleviate stress.
These effects are, however, temporary. Research has shown that prolonged exposure to nicotine increases anxiety and tension. Heightened feelings of stress are linked to nicotine withdrawal and smoking acts as a way to temporarily relieve the feeling of stress but doesn’t outright cure it. The need to relieve stress can fuel addiction to smoking due to how smoking acts as a quick fix from withdrawal.
On the next blog, a few more effects of smoking to a person’s mental health will be discussed. The blog will include a discussion on the correlation of smoking with depression, and also schizophrenia. How to help yourself break the habit of smoking is also part of the blog’s topic.
The bottom line is that of every ten people successfully quitting, 9 did so by themselves whether by slowly reducing the amount smoked or going cold turkey and only one used drug therapy and/or counseling. — Nigel Barber Ph.D.
Some people find it very difficult to do so, but with strong will and motivation, it can be done. While a majority of smokers want to quit, according to study – 70% of smokers try and abstain from it, they fail miserably. Like any other addiction (drugs, sex, gambling, and alcohol), smoking is hard to beat. But it can be done, and it must be done if you value your health more than that cigarette puff.
Smoking is on the rise today among teenagers at an increasing rate. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that in 2012, 7% of middle schoolers and 23% of high schoolers in the United States have taken up the smoking habit. Even more alarming is that there are more than 3,200 teenagers who smoke their first cigarette every day. It can be anyone, and it can be your child.