Smoking is a highly addictive nature and a majority of the consumers have a hard time quitting. This craving often leads to serious damage to our bodies and just itself, smoking affects our brains more than many may realize. I think for most smokers and non-smokers they do know the damage that it can do to our bodies, but tend to look past the seriousness it has. When it comes to our brain though, you don’t see the physical damage that it does, but you’ll begin to experience the mental and physiological damage that is being done to it.
Smoking is simply the inhalation and exhalation of fumes from burning tobacco in cigars, cigarettes and pipes. Tobacco is made with a substance that is called nicotine – a poisonous alkaloid – as well as other harmful substance like carbon monoxide, acrolein, ammonia, prussic acid and a number of aldehydes and tars. It’s inevitable that smoking poses serious health risks and the way smoking affects our brains shows that there is a bigger effect than the rest of our bodies. There really is nothing rewarding about cigarettes and has taken the lives of millions of people of year. You are ultimately killing yourself each time you choose to smoke a cigarette.
How Does Smoking Affect Our Brains?
There are several effects that smoking has on our brains. With how complex the brain is, it is without question that this highly addictive substance can cause some serious damage. Here are some ways that smoking affects our brains.
- It reduces your IQ – Several studies have been conducted to determine that smoking does in fact reduce your IQ level. Most smokers can attest to the fact that the capacity to work with analytical problems reduces after smoking. This is attributed to the reduced oxygen supply to the brain and increased presence of carbon mono-oxide in the hemoglobin.
- It induces a lack of concentration – The reduced oxygen supply to the brain also causes fatigue to creep in. A smoker is bound to feel restless and fidgety due to impure or low oxygenated blood passing through the brain.
- Reduces your sex drive – One reason for this is the fatigue that sets into the body due to nervous stimulation caused by nicotine, the second reason being that the areas of the brain responsible for sexual stimulation have lower receptors due to nicotine addiction. The brain automatically reduces its normal feel good receptors to guard against the excess of nicotine in the blood stream.
- Inhibits “feel good” receptors – Smokers tend to be liable to depressive moods because of the reduction of “feel good” receptors in their brain. It’s an artificial stimulation of the areas of brain that control feelings of pleasure and reward causes the long term effect of reducing the receptors in this region.
- Increases chances of a brain stroke – Nicotine in the blood makes it thicker. The plague deposits on the arteries increase because of excessive smoking. This causes the arteries to lose their elasticity. When they lose their elasticity or get blocked due to excess plague deposits, it results in a stroke.
- Linked to brain shrinkage – It is caused by the breakdown of barrier between the brain and blood vessels. These studies have revealed that smokers tend to develop problems with motor functioning with time, actions like walking or talking might get impacted through excessive smoking.