Nicotine dependence is caused by the repeated use of nicotine – primarily through smoking. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance, and regular exposure can lead to physical and psychological dependence.
Nicotine dependence can be diagnosed by a doctor or specialist using a combination of physical and psychological assessments. This includes a physical examination and review of medical history, as well as questions about nicotine use and related behaviors.
Nicotine dependence can be mistaken for other conditions that cause similar symptoms, such as drug or alcohol abuse, depression, anxiety, or other psychological disorders.
Treatment for nicotine dependence typically involves a combination of behavioral and pharmacological interventions. These include nicotine replacement therapies such as patches, gums, and inhalers, as well as counseling and cognitive-behavioral therapy.
The prognosis for nicotine dependence is generally good if the person is able to achieve early full remission. This means stopping all nicotine use and avoiding situations that may trigger a relapse. With appropriate treatment, most people are able to remain abstinent from nicotine and live a healthier life.