Residential Nicotine Detox
Nicotine is the highly addictive chemical found in tobacco products. These products include cigarettes, cigars, and chewing tobacco, as well as vape products. The surge in vaping in recent years has broadened the scope of nicotine addiction. About 40% of high school seniors report that they have vaped in the last year. In all, about 40 million people struggle with a nicotine addiction of some sort.
Nicotine is an addictive substance that carries its own health risks. But among people who smoke tobacco products there is a three times higher risk of negative health effects. Vaping products have also come under close scrutiny lately. This, after a number of lung-related illnesses has been reported in recent years.
LifeSync Malibu offers a nicotine detox program that can assist those who wish to break free from a nicotine addiction. Detox is when the person goes through the process of weaning off of nicotine products. The detox process should be carefully planned and managed. Someone trying to stop smoking on their own will likely not succeed. In fact, according to a 2015 survey, 70% of individuals addicted to nicotine products do want to quit. Most, though, are not able to quit on their own.
Signs of Nicotine Addiction
Nicotine is highly addictive. Smoking becomes a compulsive habit because of the nicotine. The effects of the nicotine cause a surge of endorphins that light up the reward center of the brain. Increased levels of the “feel good” neurotransmitter, dopamine, causes the brain to desire more. Nicotine’s effects, such as brief euphoria, will end quickly. The short-lived effects wear off and that leads to the repeated use. As the smoking behavior continues, the brain becomes more attuned to the effects of dopamine. This causes changes in how the brain manages stress, learning, and self-control. Over time, this process leads to nicotine addiction.
Once the body has become used to the daily intake of nicotine, the brain now expects it. If the person tries to quit they will have withdrawal symptoms. Smoking cessation is then given up just to stop the painful symptoms. This is the pattern that drives nicotine dependence.
Common Signs of Nicotine Addiction
Nicotine Addiction Can Impact:
Effects of Nicotine on the Body
We tend to connect smoking with tobacco and the dangerous affects it can have on the lungs. We immediately think of lung cancer, COPD, or emphysema when we think of the adverse effects of smoking. However, the psychoactive substance, nicotine, also impacts body functions in poor ways. Using these products for a long time may result in nicotine addiction. This can lead to an imbalance in brain chemistry.
Because the brain is changed by nicotine, it may take up to 3 months for the brain to stabilize.
What to Expect in Nicotine Detox
For detox to succeed the person will need the help of an expert detox team. These providers offer support throughout the nicotine detox, helping to wean the person off the drug. The symptoms experienced during detox are not life threatening. They are, though, quite uncomfortable. Without support it often ends with detox never being completed. The person will give up on quitting the nicotine detox because they didn’t have help to get through it.
How harsh the symptoms are depends on the extent of the smoking habit. Factors include how many packs a day are smoked or how long the smoking habit has lasted. Other factors that affect the detox symptoms include whether a co-occurring substance use disorder or a mental health disorder is present. Also, genetics, health status, and gender will factor in as well.
Nicotine Withdrawal Symptoms Include:
Nicotine detox and withdrawal symptoms emerge 4-24 hours after the last intake of nicotine. Symptoms peak on days 2-3 before starting to subside, but residual symptoms could last up to 3 weeks.
During nicotine detox, the trained LifeSync Malibu detox team will create a tapering schedule. This helps to ease the person off the drug slowly. Throughout the detox they will provide medications to help ease withdrawal symptoms. These might include nicotine replacement therapy or use of the drugs varenicline and bupropion. These both help to reduce nicotine cravings. Psychological support is also provided to help individuals get through the withdrawal symptoms and successfully complete the detox process.
After nicotine detox, a treatment program is available. These programs focus on behavior therapies, such as CBT, contingency management, and motivational interviewing to help maintain abstinence. The person will learn new coping skills to access when faced with triggers or cravings. Also, holistic actions, such as yoga, meditation, and massage, can help promote a relaxed state, and that helps reduce relapse.