Nicotine addiction is when a person becomes dependent on nicotine. Being dependent means there is a physical change in how your body reacts to a substance. Your body will also have a reaction when you stop using the substance. Nicotine can be found in tobacco products such as cigarettes, snuff, chewing tobacco, cigars, or pipes.
Tobacco use is also associated with several serious health conditions, such as:
Nicotine addition can be treated, often with a combination of therapies.
Nicotine acts on the brain's chemistry. It creates feelings of pleasure. However, the effects go away within a few minutes. Users will need to continue using nicotine to keep the good feelings going. This cycle can lead to addiction.
Anyone who uses nicotine products can become addicted to the substance.
The risk may increased with:
Family history or exposure to smoking
Exposure to smoking in movies
Victims of bullying
Symptoms develop when nicotine is not being used, also known as withdrawal. Symptoms of withdrawal include:
Thinking and attention problems
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms, medical and smoking history. A physical exam will be done.
Breathing tests may also be done to see how well your lungs are working.
Your doctor may monitor your nicotine use by checking a cotinine level in your saliva or blood.
Talk with your doctor about the best treatment plan for you. Treatment may involve one or more therapies. Options include:
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