Currently in America, smoking kills more people every year than alcohol and illegal drugs combined, claiming more than 393,000 Americans each year, cites the American Lung Association. These staggering numbers persist even though smoking-related death is completely avoidable. Despite knowing the risks, many people still cannot bring themselves to quit this deadly addiction. Medical News Today reports that over 90% of attempts to stop smoking end in failure. This is because it’s incredibly difficult to stop smoking once you’ve started, with many smoking cessation programs Los Angeles failing to provide the success that they advertise. However, a new noninvasive form of magnetic stimulation, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation or TMS, is showing promise as a tool for those looking to stop smoking.
What is TMS?
TMS first captured the attention of the medical community as a treatment option for major depression. It has been shown to be safe and effective in these trials, and researchers are now expanding the scope of TMS research to include its potential as a part of a smoking cessation program, as detailed in Psychology Today.
TMS uses electric currents to stimulate nerve endings in your brain, producing an effect that could be described as resetting. These short electrical currents are submitted by electromagnetic coils into the head of the individual looking to stop smoking.
The TMS treatment is much simpler than you might expect. It is an outpatient procedure that only takes an hour or less. During treatment, you sit comfortably while electrodes are attached to your forehead. These electrodes transmit painless electric currents into targeted areas of the brain. Although this sophisticated science is occurring, you are unlikely to notice so much as a buzzing or tapping sensation.
How does TMS Affect Smoking?
TMS uses electromagnetic coils to stimulate specific areas of the brain that are believed to be involved with nicotine addiction. It is thought that nicotine rewires neural pathways with repeated cigarette use, leading to addiction. TMS seeks to alter this nicotine-influenced wiring in order to bring the brain back to its pre-cigarette state.
According to WebMD, TMS works to alleviate nicotine cravings through its effect on dopamine, which plays an important role in mood regulation, with recent studies that show TMS significantly reducing nicotine cravings in smokers.
It is incredibly difficult to stop smoking. There are numerous smoking cessation programs available, but many people find them to be insufficient in the face of nicotine addiction. However, there is renewed hope in the face of nicotine addiction with TMS proving itself to be a safe and effective smoking cessation program.
For more information about TMS treatments for smoking cessation in Los Angeles, contact Westside Neurotherapeutics by phone at 310.946.0008 or email us at email@example.com.