View Full Version : "Calming" effects of Nicotine
I'm not sure how old the info on the calming effects of nicotine is but....
I've heard that it is not the actual drug that calms smokers, rather it's what it is that the smoker does while smoking....that's just what I've heard
Since nicotine is addictive, in an addicted smoker it is probably the drug removing the withdrawal symptoms that calms a person down.
In a newly-begun smoker, it may well be suggestion. "Here, have a ciggarette, it will calm you down." is very persuasive if you are about to break into hysterics.
I haven't heard any info on it, so this is just my observation as an addicted smoker.
Nicotine is a stimulant, but in some people a stimulant can actually be relaxing.
For example, people with ADD claim that stimulants like Ritalin and Dexedrine actually calm them down and help them focus. If this is the case, then I wonder if Cigarette smokers are self-medicating their brains to help them focus. There's a strong correlation between the increase in ADD diagnoses and the decline of smoking... Who knows?
Actually, nicotine is *both* a stimulant *and* a sedative (the wonderdrug that works wonders....). Most nerve cells communicate from cell to cell by releasing a chemical signal (neurotransmitter) into the space between neurons (synapse) where it sticks very briefly to a protein (receptor) that generates the signal in the next neuron. Many neurons use acetylcholine to as the neurotransmitter. One type of acetylcholine receptor is very sensitive to nicotine. Nicotine initally acts like acetylcholine, sticking to the receptor and generating a signal. Since the signals from acetylcholine receptors are usually excitatory, the initial hit from a cigarette is stimulating. However, unlike acetylcholine, nicotine doesn't like to let go of the receptor after it has produced its signal. At this point it begins to block the normal signals from acetylcholine. The result is sedation.
Since the delivery devices for nicotine also poison your mouth, throat, lungs and heart as well as make your clothes and breath smell like burning cow pies, is it any wonder that its use is so popular??
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