Smoking is hazardous to human beings. Right from brain to toe, smoking wrecks havoc to the smoker. The effects of smoking on brain are highly dangerous. Discover how smoking affects the human brain, here.
The brain, the center for mood and conscious thoughts, makes thinking and feeling possible. It controls the voluntary movements and regulates digestion and breathing. So, the brain controls the conscious thoughts as well as the unconscious body processes.
Nicotine and the Brain
The brain is connected to the heart and the lungs through arteries. These arteries supply oxygen and other chemicals to the brain. So, when a person smokes cigarette, the chemicals inhaled are sent to the brain.
The chemicals, particularly nicotine, reach the brain ten seconds after the smoke is inhaled and remains active for 20-40 minutes. After reaching, nicotine affects, changes and controls the specialized receptor cells (responsible for regulating the well-being, mood and memory) in the brain. This, in turn, changes the chemistry of the brain, which finally affects the smoker’s mood.
Withdrawal of nicotine leads to mood changes, irritability, and anxiety. When the situation becomes severe, the smoker feels uncomfortable because of intense yearning for more nicotine.
Eventually, with regular and long term use of nicotine, it becomes an addiction. The smokers then need nicotine to maintain their normal function.
Smoking effects on the Brain
- Smoking blocks the carotid artery. So, blood supply to the brain cells are cut off. This results in stroke, called cerebral thrombosis. Smokers’ risk of having a stroke is 1.5 times more than non-smokers.
- Smoking also leads to thickening and clotting of the blood.
- Smoking causes oxidative stress.
It’s a myth that smoking helps to concentrate and makes a smoker alert. In fact, the speed and accuracy of a smoker’s thinking ability becomes weak. Smoking also lowers down the smokers’ IQ. This fact has been established by a study conducted by University of Michigan researchers.
The researchers also confirmed that long-term smoking have harmful effects on memory, problem-solving, and IQ. In fact, they viewed that smoking diminishes the thinking ability of a person.
Benefits of Quitting Smoking
Smoking which changes the human brain, when quit can benefit the smoker. So, give up smoking and decrease your risk of having strokes.