Nicotine is a substance commonly found in the plants species of the Solanacease family, which includes the tobacco plant. It’s an alkaloid chemical and biosynthesized in the plant’s root before transferred to the leaves. Nicotine is essentially a toxin and can be used to kill small insects. Tobacco leaves were used as effective insecticides and they can become an effective alternative for this purpose. The mild toxicity of tobacco will accumulate inside our body and may cause a wide range of problems. Healthy cells can be damaged and our body will need to replace them.
Nicotine addiction is a big problem and it affects our central nervous system. Our brain has specific nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and they will bind nicotine that’s present in the bloodstream. The amount of neurotransmitter in our brain increases among smokers. As an example, dopamine, is one of the neurotransmitter and its level increases as we are continuously exposed to nicotine. When we are continuously exposed to nicotine, we will have a feeling of relaxation and euphoria. It is clear that nicotine has significant psychoactive effect and it will alter our overall mood.
Liver metabolizes excess nicotine in our body and as a result, our liver releases glucose and our adrenal medulla releases epinephrine. The sudden release of epinephrine and glucose cause the feeling of mild euphoria. As a result, people who stop smoking often say that they lose the feeling of sharpness, increased alertness and relaxation. The pain-relieving property also encourages smokers to continue using tobacco to relieve their discomfort. Unfortunately, the side effect of nicotine intake far outweighs these psychological benefits and many different problems could happen to us.
People who smoke, often have increased risk of heart attacks and hypertension. It is true that each cigarette may reduce our lifespan by a few minutes. It’s not uncommon for smokers to burn a pack each day and in the end, they may lose 12 years or more of their productive lives. Nicotine also seems to have an effect the production of estrogen in our hippocampus. People who are exposed to nicotine is more likely to have cognitive problems when they are older. The effect of nicotine is much milder than cocaine and heroin, but the accumulated effects can be quite significant.
Because we use nicotine each day, more harm can happen to our body and all the toxins will be absorbed readily into the bloodstream, eventually reaching our brain and other vital systems in our body. This can happen due to regular intake with nicotine patches or tobacco. Although nicotine isn’t the doctor’s best friend, it has a number of medical purposes. Minus its harmful effects, nicotine in a concentrated form can become a potent pain killer. This further confirms the psychoactive property of nicotine and it’s important for tobacco addicts to get proper treatment in terms of counselling and in more serious cases, the doctor may prescribe a number of medications. These facts should help you to be aware of the bad effects of nicotine.