Nicotine & Addiction

You may think that you can use tobacco without becoming addicted. But the truth is, most teens who use tobacco will get hooked. Three out of four teens who smoke cigarettes in high school will still be smoking as adults.

What Is Nicotine?

Nicotine is the chemical found in tobacco products that is responsible for addiction. When you use tobacco, nicotine is quickly absorbed into your body and goes directly to your brain. Nicotine activates areas of the brain that make you feel satisfied and happy. Whether you smoke, vape, or dip, the nicotine you are putting in your body is dangerously addictive and can be harmful to your developing brain.

What Does Nicotine Addiction Look Like?

Nicotine addiction can look different from person to person. Even if you only use tobacco once in a while, you can be addicted and can have a hard time quitting.

Some signs of nicotine addiction include:

Cravings, or feeling like you really need to use tobacco.
Going out of your way to get tobacco.
Feeling anxious or irritable if you want to use tobacco but can’t.Continuing to use tobacco because you find it hard to stop.

Why Is Nicotine Dangerous?

Nicotine can lead to addiction, which puts you at risk of becoming a lifelong smoker and exposing you to the many harmful chemicals in tobacco. Teens are especially sensitive to nicotine’s addictive effects because their brains are still developing. Using nicotine during your teen years can also rewire your brain to become more easily addicted to other drugs.