Nicotine is a drug derived from tobacco plant leaves. The tobacco plant produces this toxin in order to repel insects from eating its leaves. Nicotine is commonly used as an insecticide. Pound-for-pound pure nicotine is more toxic than cyanide.

Nicotine is also a highly addictive drug when consumed by humans. This is because nicotine is similar to the neurotransmitter ‘acetylcholine’ which is responsible for the release of the brain’s ‘feel-good’ hormone known as dopamine. In this way, nicotine addiction works similarly to heroin and cocaine addiction.

How Nicotine Addiction Works

Over time, a tolerance to nicotine is built up meaning a more significant amount of nicotine is required in order to feel the desired ‘high’.

When tobacco consumption is halted, a number of withdrawal symptoms including anxiety, mood swings and irritability are encountered.

Following this, the brain reduces the amount of acetylcholine produced and instead relies on nicotine in order to release dopamine. If nicotine is withdrawn from, the body will suffer from low levels of dopamine. This means users are likely to feel highly anxious and depressed during detoxification.

As withdrawal symptoms arise, many users return to smoking in order to ease the feelings associated.

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Nicotine Addiction Health Implications

Like all addictions, nicotine addictions have several short and long-term health complications on individuals who find themselves struggling. Sadly, many of the health complications associated with nicotine addictions are often ignored.

Below, we have outlined the various health implications that come hand-in-hand with nicotine addictions.


Short-Term Health Implications of Nicotine Addictions

The short-term health implications of nicotine addictions are often short-lived. However, this is not to say that they should not be treated or taken seriously. Below, we have outlined just a few of the short-term health implications of nicotine addictions.

  • Fatigue
  • Reduced energy levels
  • Shortness of breath
  • Altered senses

If you have experienced any of the short-term health implications of nicotine addiction, please reach out to us for support. Failure to administer treatment when short-term health implications arise could cause you to experience a wealth of long-term health implications.


Long-Term Health Implications of Nicotine Addictions

Tobacco contains several harmful secondary substances such as tar and carbon monoxide.  Combined these secondary substances are responsible for long-term health problems due to smoking.

Unlike the short-term health implications of nicotine addiction, the long-term health implications faced are often irreversible. Although treatment can be provided to reduce the ramifications felt, those left struggling with the following health implications will find that their life is considerably impaired.

  • Heart disease
  • Cancer of the lungs and throat
  • Emphysema
  • Infertility
  • Risk of Stroke
  • Diabetes
  • Skin wrinkles
  • Respiratory problems

If you have experienced any of the above health implications, you must seek professional support from either rehab or medical professional. Failure to do so could put your life at risk

Nicotine Withdrawal Symptoms

When an individual is unable to administer nicotine, various withdrawal symptoms will arise. Often unpleasant and one of the leading causes of relapse, nicotine withdrawal symptoms often include the following;

  • Cravings for the drug
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Attention-deficit
  • Anxiety
  • Headaches
  • Increased appetite
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue

Although withdrawal symptoms are unavoidable, should you seek treatment for your nicotine addiction at our residential rehab, you will be provided around-the-clock care. This care will provide you with the support you need to navigate the symptoms you experience.

If the withdrawal symptoms you experience in rehab are somewhat intense, you may be provided with prescription drugs to reduce your discomfort.

Our Nicotine Addiction Treatment

Our nicotine rehabilitation programme is based on abstinence. Therefore, nicotine replacement therapy is not included in our residential rehabilitation programme.

During detoxification, you are required to cease consumption of nicotine entirely. As touched on above, you may encounter adverse withdrawal symptoms throughout the detoxification process. However, you will be monitored 24 hours a day by our medical team.

Typically, withdrawal symptoms can last for up to 10 days from when the drug was last consumed.

What Happens After Detoxification?

Once withdrawal symptoms begin to cease during detoxification, you will be subject to many therapy and counselling sessions. During this time, you will be encouraged to come face-to-face with the psychological components of your nicotine addiction.

Although you may find this somewhat uncomfortable, doing so will enable you to uncover the factors that have caused you to become addicted to nicotine. You will also be able to identify any triggers that may cause you to experience a relapse in the future.

In doing so, as you work with our dedicated recovery team, you will be able to develop various coping strategies that will ultimately help you to secure a long-term recovery.

As you progress through rehabilitation, your recovery will be monitored by our recovery team and medical professionals. As and when they are confident that you have made significant progress in overcoming your nicotine addiction, you will be able to leave our centre and continue to recover from your addiction at home.

Our Aftercare Support

In order to ensure that you have the recovery support you need upon leaving our centre, we will provide you with 12-months of free aftercare support.

This aftercare support will essentially mitigate your risk of relapse by providing you with the opportunity to attend weekly catch up sessions at our centre. We will also recommend a number of addiction recovery groups that we deem suitable, such as Nicotine Anonymous.

For Quick Access To Nicotine Rehabilitation Contact Us Today

If you are ready to overcome your addiction and commit to a substance-free life, we would encourage you to contact us today.

In doing so, you will be able to take the first step in addressing your addiction.

Our admissions team will be on the other end of the phone to discuss your addiction with you. Our team will listen to how your nicotine addiction has consumed your life, and provide you with the support and guidance you require.

Furthermore, our admissions team will ensure that you understand the support that is available to you via our residential rehab centre.

To contact us, please call 01253 847 553. Alternatively, you can request a call back via our online form.

John Gillen - Author - Last updated: December 22, 2023

John is one UK’s leading professionals in the addiction recovery industry. Pioneering new treatment techniques such as NAD+ and ongoing research into new therapy techniques such as systematic laser therapy, John is committed to providing the very best treatment for people throughout the UK and Europe. During his extremely busy schedule, John likes to regularly update our blog section with the latest news and trends in the industry to keep visitors to our site as well informed as possible on everything related to addiction treatment.

Dr Robert Lutaaya - Clinical Reviewer - Last reviewed: December 19, 2023

MBChB, MSc Psych

Dr Robert Lutaaya qualified in 1995 from Worclaw Medical University as MBChB, and obtained a MSc Psych from the University of Manchester in 2014. Dr Lutaaya has previously worked for the CGL Substance Misuse Service and as an on-call doctor substance misuse Doctor for 17 years before joining Ocean Recovery. Dr Robert Lutaaya is committed to helping those struggling with alcohol and drug addictions.