Nicotine is the primary active ingredient in cigarettes. Tobacco leaves are composed of dozens of chemical properties. To make cigarettes, tobacco is processed with tons of other chemicals as well, resulting in a product that’s hardly natural. Mistakenly many think nicotine is the cause of cigarette smoking related illnesses or death. Nicotine is largely responsible for the addiction to cigarettes. Because nicotine is such a small part of what cigarettes are and how cigarettes become addictive, there has to be other chemicals involved. Compare a packaged cigarette to that of a self rolled cigarette. A self rolled cigarette will have the brown, stringy tobacco in it. A packaged and processed cigarette will have the familiar orange tip and white fluffy body. According to decodedscience.org, “the tobacco industry adds extra chemicals to help the cigarette burn evenly and to preserve taste. The resultant ‘drag’ from the cigarette is a potent mix of chemicals that, over time, cause illness and potentially death.”
Cigarette addiction is chemical as well as behavioral. Discussing the neuroscience of habit, NPR writes that habits are made in “a part of the brain called the basal ganglia, which also plays a key role in the development of emotions, memories and pattern recognition.” Smoking a cigarette has no real purpose in life. Many report a sense of calm or even a tingling sensation when they smoke a cigarette- equal parts chemical reaction and behavioral reaction. Whether out of boredom, on a work break, in a stressful situation, or a celebratory situation, the reasons cigarettes are smoked become memory-stored patterns. The decision to smoke is part of the habit building process. “Decisions,” NPR explains, “are made in a different part of the brain called the prefrontal cortex.” When that habit becomes ingrained, it becomes an automatic behavior. At that point, NPR describes, “the decision-making part of your brain goes into a sleep mode of sorts.”
Harmful Effects of Cigarettes
Cigarettes are bad for health, bad for the environment, and bad for others. Smoking cigarettes and early recovery, especially during the treatment process, are closely associated. Many professionals feel cigarette smoking is the lesser of two evils for those seeking treatment for addiction or alcoholism. Treatment is the perfect place to stop smoking cigarettes and be taken care of during the withdrawals. Other harmful effects of cigarette smoking includes:
Second Hand Smoke
Aurora Recovery Centers incorporates smoking cessation as part of our core treatment program for addiction and alcoholism. Members are not required to quit smoking. However, full holistic health and healing is our goal at Aurora. Focusing on healing the mind, body, and spirit, Aurora provides a thorough program for life transformation. Recovery starts with you. Call us today at 1-844-515-STOP.