Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Nicotine Addiction Booklet

Nicotine, which is a chemical component of the tobacco found in cigarettes and other chewable or smokeable products, is one of the most addictive drugs in the world. Addiction to nicotine affects both teenagers and adults of all ages and walks of life, and ultimately can be fatal. Many smokers want to quit but are unable to due to nicotine addiction, according to the United States federal agency, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).

Death Rate

Use of nicotine products such as cigarettes and chewing tobacco leads to the death of about 440,000 Americans each year, according to the NIDA. Twenty percent of all deaths in the United States can be attributed to nicotine addiction.

Quitting Nicotine

About 85 percent of smokers who try to quit fail because of their nicotine addiction. Most smokers are aware that they are putting their lives at risk, but cannot stop because they are addicted, according to the NIDA.

Pregnant Smokers

Despite potential risks to their unborn children, such a low birth weight and even retardation, some nicotine-addicted pregnant women still cannot stop smoking, according to the NIDA. An estimated 16 percent of American women smoke while pregnant.


There are several effective treatments for nicotine addiction. Such remedies include nicotine gum or patches, therapy, antidepressant drugs such as Zyban, and the 12-step group Nicotine Anonymous (see Resources).

Withdrawal Symptoms

Those who do try to stop the cycle of their nicotine addiction will likely suffer from one or more withdrawal symptoms. People quitting smoking or chewing tobacco may experience depression, increased appetite, anxiety, irritability and sleep problems.

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