Smoking cigarettes can be an awfully hard habit to break. That’s because nicotine alters your brain’s balance of dopamine and noradrenaline, making it highly addictive. In 2017, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 14 percent of all adults in the U.S. smoked cigarettes. That number dropped from nearly 21 percent of adults in 2005 — but it’s still dangerously high. Each year in the U.S., smoking causes 1 out of every 5 deaths with illnesses related to tobacco use, meaning it kills more people than HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol, guns, and car accidents combined. It’s responsible for 90 percent of all lung cancer deaths and 80 percent of all chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) deaths.
The good news is that within a few years of quitting, your chances of developing cardiovascular conditions and cancer drop. But quitting means your levels of dopamine and noradrenaline drop, too, which could leave you feeling irritable, depressed, or anxious. If you’re trying to stop smoking, you have a variety of options, from support groups and quitting programs to medications and nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), which is especially effective for withdrawal symptoms and can increase your chances of quitting for good.
Cannabis, and CBD in particular, has also been shown to help people stop smoking. A study published in 2018 reported CBD can help you focus less on your cravings, and may also reduce addiction-seeking behavior. Keep up with cannabisMD to learn all the ways cannabis might help you quit smoking.