Smokers tend to have lower IQ than non-smokers. It is not just a coincidence. Studies have shown that people who smoke are more likely to have mental decline. They tend to have poorer memory and lower level of concentration.
You don’t want to be called “stupid” do you? But if you are a smoker, you are exposing your brain to severe toxins that affect your cognitive function. If you want to grow old healthy and mentally sharp, you really want to quit smoking today. Smoking doesn’t just harm your lungs, heart, stomach, and other parts of your body. It also endangers your brain! Here are the ways on how smoking makes you stupid:
1. Smoking prevents the oxygen from reaching your brain.
Nicotine, along with the other harmful compounds in tobacco, goes to your blood stream. When your heart pumps blood, the blood that carries oxygen is transported to all parts of your body including the brain. But the toxic compounds present in tobacco remain stuck in your nerves, preventing the blood from reaching the brain. Lack of oxygen in the brain can cause severe damage, from inflammation to blood clotting.
2. Smoking elevates your blood pressure.
So what does this have to do with your brain? All parts of the brain are all connected to each other – working hand in hand to keep you alive and functioning. Smoking is a major risk factor for hypertension because it elevates blood pressure. People with high blood pressure are at risk of having a stroke which happens when blood does not fully circulate in the brain (leading to blood clot and then stroke). Most people who had stroke usually experience long-term mental problems.
3. Tobacco deprives your brain of blood.
Cigarette smoke blocks the carotid artery, which in turn cuts the supply of blood in the brain cells. This may lead to stroke and cerebral thrombosis. People who smoke are 1.5 times more likely to have a stroke than non-smokers.
4. Smoking stimulates abnormal surge in dopamine levels.
Tobacco stimulates the sudden release of dopamine in the brain, the same effect with morphine. Research has linked fluctuating dopamine levels to depression, bipolar disorder, and other mental health problems.
5. It deactivates certain in the brain.
One study found that regions in the brain involved in memory, pleasure, and emotion are less active in people who smoke. Researchers aren’t still sure why they behave this way but they believe it’s because nicotine and other toxins found in tobacco are affecting this area.
Quitting will save your life
To live a more satisfying life, you should make sure that you have a strong and healthy mind. Happiness and fulfilment are unattainable if you are suffering from mental illnesses. Quitting smoking now is one way to prevent the risk of dementia – a serious mental disorder that deprives you of having a reliable memory as you age.