Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Results Of Nicotine Around The Brain

Nicotine is one of the primary components in tobacco, and it is a highly addictive drug. When tobacco smoke is inhaled, nicotine is absorbed into the blood stream and can affect the brain within seconds. As a person continues to smoke, the brain builds up a tolerance for nicotine. This develops into a powerful addiction, which can be as difficult to break as addiction to cocaine or heroin.


Dopamine, which is a neurotransmitter in the brain, produces feelings of pleasure and arousal. Nicotine temporarily raises the dopamine levels in the brain, causing the smoker to rely on cigarettes in order to maintain this sensation of pleasure.


Nicotine causes the brain to produce more endorphins, which help to relieve both physical and emotional pain. This helps smokers feel a decrease in stress, and therefore strengthens their addiction to nicotine.


Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter in the brain that helps to regulate the body's energy levels. Nicotine stimulates the release of acetylcholine, giving the smoker a sense of increased energy. Smokers begin to depend on cigarettes as an energy booster.

Effects on Young Brains

Nicotine affects both the structural and chemical changes of the developing adolescent brain. This can cause lifelong damage, including a higher risk of addiction to other drugs and even mental illness.

Withdrawal Symptoms

Once the brain has built up a tolerance for nicotine, withdrawal symptoms can be particularly unpleasant. Nausea, headaches, insomnia and high stress levels are all common side effects of nicotine withdrawal. Eventually the brain will adjust and the symptoms will fade away.

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