How Nicotine, Caffeine, and Alcohol does Affect the Nervous System

Alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine have several common features. They are the most widely consumed psychotropic drugs in the world. As a result of their psychotropic properties, they have the power to influence the people nervous system.


Characteristics of the people nervous system

The human nervous system functions as an entity that organizes controls and coordinates bodily functions. The cells of the nervous system, known as neurons, are specialized in sending electrical signals to the brain so it will interpret the signal and send a response.

The nervous system is split into the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS). The central nervous system is formed from the brain and spinal cord, of which the brain stands out as the command center of the whole body. The PNS consists of nerves that broaden from the central nervous system.

How Nicotine, Caffeine, and Alcohol does Affect the Nervous System

How does nicotine affect the nervous system?

Nicotine is a compound of alkaloid kind that’s found in high concentrations in the leaves of the tobacco plant, although it’s additionally present in different vegetables of the solanaceous group, just like the tomato or the potato.

Nicotine is in a position to bind to acetylcholine receptors because of the cholinergic action of nicotine. When nicotine binds to receptors it mimics the activity of the neurochemical (acetylcholine) by stimulating the nervous-system. Acetylcholine will increase alertness at low concentrations and creates a way of reward in the limbic system, a way of enjoyment at high doses. This is why nicotine has similar effects.

Nicotine addiction is as a result of overstimulation (by the impact of nicotine consumption) of these receptors causes a lot of acetylcholine receptors to be synthesized and that a larger amount of acetylcholine (or nicotine) is needed to activate the neurons.

Activation of nicotinic or acetylcholinergic receptors not only happens in the central nervous system however also in the peripheral and ends up in increased internal organ activity or increased pulse of the heart.


How does caffeine affect the nervous system?

Caffeine decreases sleep by block the adenosine receptor, “however what does this mean? All the time we are awake our brain neurons are manufacturing this substance, which acts in numerous biochemical processes and additionally has “sedative and repressive effects on neurotics’ activity.” Our nervous system is consistently observance the amount of adenosine through numerous receptors and once they reach a particular point, it’s normal that we start to feel sleepy or wish to rest.

Actually, what makes caffeine is to connect to those receptors, as a result of it’s structurally very almost like adenosine, however, doesn’t activate them, but only blocks them. With these blocked receptors, different natural brain stimulants, like dopamine and glutamate, will do their job. Caffeine can be found in many foods and drinks, not only in coffee.


How does alcohol affect the nervous system?

Alcohol negatively affects the cerebral development inflicting the decrease of the prefrontal cortex and hippocampus size, the worse quality of the nervous tissue and a poor blood supply. Alcohol modifies a number of some neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins, among others, that are associated with aggressiveness. Thus, there’s a causative relationship between consuming alcohol and maintaining violent attitudes, and even with suicide tries.


Alcohol is additionally closely associated with mental diseases, either precipitating them (transient psychotic episodes, alcoholic hallucinosis) or aggravating some existing ones (depression, emotional disorder, schizophrenic psychosis or anxiety disorder).