Smoking Addiction

by Andy McDonald

Smoking addiction is the most common aspect of being tightly dependent on something. Based on the definition of the addiction behavior, this can’t be considered as healthy behavior though the effects of smoking are damages and health issues such as ulcers and respiratory damages that can lead to lungs cancer. The reality is that smoking addiction has more than one aspect. As addiction, it is a psychological disorder and it is caused by the dependency on certain substance.  The importance of that type of addiction is that can expand the effects to non smokers and may harm them indirectly.

Smoking addiction causes:

Smoking addiction can be understood through understanding the reasons that leads to the first cigarette. Yet the smoking habit is something that is learned and settled after several experiences, and that tobacco contains some addictive substances, the reason behind smoking is not material.

Smoking is considered as a social behavior that should be interpreted as sign of belonging to an age class or financial class. It holds to psychological reasons. The smoker first think about his belonging state and begin smoking to identify himself. Listed below, in more details, the psychological reason to start smoking:

  • It’s a challenge to others: the subject has to prove himself as courageous, not susceptible to intimidation by daring this step ahead. This is the real point that separates him from being a child and becoming a growing up.
  • It’s a sign of being responsible and reliable: someone who can go so far is someone able of considerable sacrifices; he is dependable and wise.
  • It’s a fashion: adolescents tend to smoke in order to attract the opposite who would try the same by what fits (making up)
  • The mark you smoke is you social rank: in fact, rich guys smoke expensive cigarettes and medium guys smoke average cigarettes.
  • It’s none but an imitation: the guy or the girl are influenced by an idol who smokes. This can be parent, a brother, a star or a character.

After smoking the first cigarette, there is a serial of events that happens within the brain -for the addiction process- that lead to smoking addiction.

Physiology of smoking addiction:

Smoking addiction has another side beside the psychological one; it is related to the neural functioning of the body. There are some reactions that happens within the brain that leads the subject to become really addicted to tobacco. In fact, tobacco when incinerated and inhaled loads the lungs with nicotine. Actually, the brain produces its own nicotine. This protein is involved in energetic reactions within the whole body as a compound that serves as transfer bus nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide where nicotinamide is the vitamin B3. The high amount of nicotine induces the release of dopamine; the hormone of satisfaction and pleasure. The lack of this hormone induces the brain to begin claiming it, this leads to more cigarettes and more nicotine. At every smoked cigarette, the effect of nicotine as stimulator decreases and the brain claims more nicotine to rise the dopamine induction.

Symptoms of smoking addiction:

Smoking addiction is associated to several symptoms. The reality is that addiction is the state of dependeny on nicotine. The symptoms are usually called withdrawal symptoms because they occur during the period of trying to stop smoking. As long as you are on cigarettes, addiction symptoms are :

  • You can’t think about stop smoking.
  • You defend the smoking behavior.
  • You seek cigarettes whenever you are nervous, excited or stressed out.


At first sight, quitting smoking seems to be a hard task ; it is more related to psychology than to physiology. Actually, the two of them are fused in order to complicate the fact. The good news is that the will of the smoker can really reduce to nothing and make easy overcoming the smoking addiction.