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Early Nicotine Use Leads To Lasting Nicotine Addiction


Nicotine dependency can start even before smoking becomes a habit. According to a recent research conducted by Dr. Joseph DiFranza, a professor of family medicine and community health at the University Of Massachusetts School Of Medicine , kids in their adolescence period stand at a far greater threat of getting addicted to nicotine than adults. In fact, many kids who start smoking in their early teens fall into nicotine addiction within a few weeks.

Most of the people start smoking, telling themselves, “Just One, what is the harm in fagging just once, it's not like am going to get addicted, I can leave it anytime I like”. They take a drag of nicotine for the sake of that momentary necessity to keep up with their peer group or the immediate environment. But beware, you may be making a right estimation if you are 45 or older - but if you are in your teens or say between 15 to 24 years, you are absolutely wrong; you can easily get addicted once nicotine gets into your system.

A team of researchers led by psychologist Naomi Breslau surveyed the levels of nicotine dependence among 4414 smokers in different age groups by taking the following three symptoms of nicotine addiction into consideration:

  • Failure to quit smoking
  • Anguish and pain at the inability to quit smoking
  • Severe and callous withdrawal syndrome at any efforts to quit smoking

The survey gave very astonishing results. Though people in the older age group (45 to 54) have been smoking more cigarettes on a daily basis (60%) than the younger age group (15 to 24) at 36%, the level of addiction is definitely higher among the younger age group.

People in the older age group have been using nicotine in higher quantity and for a longer period of time than many of those in the younger age group. But when it comes to nicotine addiction, the younger lot is easily hooked to the fatal habit. The result below tells it loud and clear.

  • 60% of the smokers in the younger group who had smoked for six years were addicted.
  • 10% of the smokers in the older group who had smoked for six years were addicted.

According to another research conducted by Duke University Medical Center pharmacologists on animals, people who have been introduced to nicotine at an early age are at a greater risk of falling into lasting nicotine addiction. It says that kids would take an average of 20 years to break the addiction.

The human brain is in a crucial stage of development during the teenage years. The introduction of nicotine to the brain at this stage may result in the disruption of the wiring of the brain to go incongruously. Kids and teens, who use nicotine early in their lives may have brains that are sculpted and chiseled around nicotine. Truly, early nicotine use can lead to lasting nicotine addiction.

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