Unlike other types of addiction mentioned on this page, there are few forms of smoking, which are not linked to an addiction. In fact, an addiction is defined as a dependence on a certain substance, to the point where we cannot live without it, even if we know that consuming this substance can be harmful to our health. Here we can speak of both mental and physical health.
Smoking is one of the most common forms of addiction. Besides drugs and alcohol, a large part of the population is addicted to consuming cigarettes, which can even go up to several packs a day. Recent figures show that approximately 1 billion people worldwide smoke.
As with the majority of addictions, consuming the first cigarettes creates a good feeling. Unfortunately, however, after a certain amount of time you are going to have to consume more to get that same feeling. Moreover, from the moment you are addicted, a sense of loss also appears. Smoking is then no longer about getting a good feeling from consuming a cigarette, but about not being able to live without it. It can therefore be useful to take the step of quitting smoking.
Smoking? Why you are addicted to smoking!
The biggest culprit of smoking is nicotine. In fact, this one is going to have the most influence in creating an addiction. It is this substance that will cause us to become addicted to smoking, that we cannot live without it. In addition, cigarettes also contain other chemicals, which will cause the addictive effect of nicotine to be enhanced.
Of course, in addition to the addictive substances in cigarettes, there are other reasons why smoking is so addictive and why quitting is so difficult. Below we list the main reasons.
The physical addiction
Like drugs, smoking stimulates certain nerve cells. In addition, smoking triggers the release of certain substances in the brain, known as the happiness hormone, as well as sedative and addictive effects. These include dopamine, adrenaline and serotonin. However, adrenaline is also known as the stress hormone. Often people feel that smoking will calm them down, yet these people are usually more nervous than non-smokers. In addition, your body demands more and more of this, which explains the addictive effects of smoking.
Because of this physical addiction, it can be more difficult to quit smoking, which, however, cannot make it any less worthwhile. The majority of people therefore experience withdrawal symptoms when quitting smoking. For example, while quitting smoking, you may experience a constant craving for a cigarette. In addition, quitting smoking can also lead to weight gain, which can be linked to the habit of putting something in your mouth.
The mental addiction
In addition to our body's reaction to the cigarette, there is also our mind's reaction to smoking. Smoking, and consequently the cigarette, is often regarded as a kind of handhold during difficult periods or periods of stress. Smoking is seen as a means to calm down in all this chaos; your regular breaks during busy days, during lonely moments,...
Moreover, like other types of addiction, smoking can be a way to reward yourself. "If I study that many more pages, I can go smoke one," says the writer. "Just a little while longer and then it's my smoke break." Despite being aware of all the negative effects of smoking on your body, smoking is often a mental reward.
Furthermore, smoking can also have other functions, such as a means of belonging. Everyone else is smoking outside and of course you don't want to sit there alone. Or you don't know how to hold a pose; with a cigarette in your hand this already becomes easier. So smoking can have many different psychological purposes. But what is certain is that it always fills some kind of void, an insecurity, a reward, a hold. It masks a problem.
It can also be difficult to quit smoking for these psychological reasons, as you may feel that a certain constant in your life is gone. However, you can look for support, which can support the psychological effects of quitting smoking!
Why should you stop smoking?
There are many studies, which try to unravel the link between smoking and diseases. Despite the lack of a causal link between smoking and these diseases, there does appear to be a high correlation between smoking and tobacco-related diseases. These diseases can range from treatable conditions to chronic diseases and even mortality. Below we list some of the diseases that have been linked to smoking:
- Lung disease
- Crohn's disease
- Cardiovascular disorders
- Eye diseases
- Erectile dysfunction and fertility problems
- Oral diseases
- Skin aging
- Deterioration of the condition
Recent research also shows that quitting smoking has several social benefits. For example, it appears that smoking is no longer socially very popular, so smokers often feel less socially accepted and more likely to feel like outsiders. In addition, it appears that people who quit smoking or do not smoke also have more social opportunities. For example, quitting smoking or not smoking can have advantages when looking for work.
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