Early Signs of Addiction in Teens Who Smoke
By Steve Tokar
The brains of adolescents who smoke as little as two cigarettes a day respond to images of smoking as do the brains of heavily addicted adult smokers: with pleasure.
A study by UCSF’s Mark Rubinstein, MD, finds that the threshold for nicotine addiction in teenagers might be much lower than is commonly believed.
“Most smoking cessation programs require that you smoke at least ten cigarettes per day,” says Rubinstein, associate professor and adolescent medicine specialist in the Department of Pediatrics at UCSF’s School of Medicine. “Below five [cigarettes per day], it’s very controversial as to whether you are even addicted, even if you are smoking daily.”
For the study, which was supported by an award from the Strategic Opportunities Support (SOS) program of UCSF’s Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI), Rubinstein recruited a group of teenagers who smoked fewer than five cigarettes per day, and a matched group of adolescent non-smokers.
Read more at UCSF.edu
We hope the conversations that take place on ctsi.ucsf.edu will be energetic and constructive.
To make sure we all stay on-topic, all posts will be reviewed for readability and clarity by our editors and may be edited for clarity, length, and relevance.
We ask that commentators adhere to the following guidelines.
- No selling of products or services. This is an ad-free zone.
- No offensive language and ad hominem attacks. Criticize ideas, not the people behind them.
- No multimedia. If you want to share outside sources, please link to them, don't paste them in.
Once postings are published, they are public, and we take no responsibility for how they might be disseminated or republished on the web or in other media.
All postings become the property of ctsi.ucsf.edu.