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Can Smoking Cigarettes be Good for You?

Author Dyan Ferguson. Published on October 21, 2011 - 3:23 pm (498 views — 442 words)

We constantly hear about how cigarettes are harmful to our health. The tobacco companies even plainly print the warnings right there on the pack. Everyone knows by now the dangers that are associated with lighting up and the warnings of everything from the possibility of aqquiring lung cancer, oral cancer, COPD, and emphysema, but have you ever heard of smoking being good for you? Well, maybe it could be helpful in certain instances.

Research has shown that people with conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and ulcerative colitis may benefit from the use of nicotine. As a matter of fact, doctors are now using it as a treatment in some instances. Pharmaceutical companies are starting to manufacture nicotine in pill form for prescribing to patients with various ailments.

People with Alzheimer's have progressive mental deterioration due to generalized degeneration of the brain. Study's have shown improvement in cognitive function and a slower than usual rate of mental decline in those patients who either smoked cigarettes or were treated with nicotine therapy.

Similarly, people who have Parkinson's disease have shown improvement in several areas such as having lessened tremors and muscular rigidity. Smoking triggers your brain to produce and transmit dopamine which is our "feel good" chemical. Those with Parkinson's have a dopamine deficiency due to the degeneration of the basal ganglia of the brain. It has also been shown that smokers are far less likely to develop Parkinson's than non smokers.

Ulcerative colitis patients suffer from this more severe form of irritable bowel syndrome, which typically includes bouts of severe pain, cramping, diarhea, and bloody stools as a result of ulcers on the lining of the colon as the name implies. Many people with this condition have reported great improvement from simply smoking 3 to 5 cigarettes per day. This is due to the release of nitric oxide when you smoke, which seems to calm the activity and spasms of the colon.

The fact still remains that if you choose to smoke cigarettes to treat any of these conditions you are still subjecting yourself to the carcinogens in tobacco smoke. So is it worth it to have the risk of lung cancer as a side effect of this method of treatment? Of course we already have nicotine patches, gum, and lozenges on the market that are typically used as an aid to stop smoking but these products can also have side effects. However, it is always an option to consider for those who choose to not smoke. I suppose just like any other drug out there you have to weigh the pros and cons and ultimately make the decision for yourself.