Ciggies, Cigars, Cigarettes, Fags, Rollies, Smokes, Chewing Tobacco, Snuff, Snu.
Tobacco is a substance produced from the leaves of the tobacco plant. Though this is a naturally derived product it is usually highly processed and can contain hundreds of different chemical additives. Nicotine, an addictive stimulant, is the active drug in tobacco.
Tobacco is most commonly smoked but can also be chewed (chewing tobacco), sniffed (snuff) or placed in between your gums and cheeks (snus - not readily available in the UK). Tobacco consumption varies widely from one user to another and the dose of nicotine in tobacco which is smoked varies from light (0.4 - 0.6mg) to heavy (3 - 4mg). Cigarettes commonly contain between 0.13 and 2mg of nicotine per cigarette but this should be detailed on the cigarette pack.
Smoking tobacco allows the chemicals contained in the tobacco, including nicotine, to enter the bloodstream very quickly. Once these chemicals are in the blood they are transported to the brain within seconds. The effects of smoking tobacco can be felt after about 30 seconds and can last between 6-14 hours after smoking.
Smoking increases the user's heart rate and blood pressure due to the nicotine entering the bloodstream and smokers often report feeling relaxed and less hungry afterwards. However first time smokers often feel dizzy and nauseous.
Some of the negative effects of smoking include and increased risk of heart disease, more common and more severe coughs and chest infections, and an increased risk of lung cancer for both the user and others that inhale their smoke. In the UK alone, over a hundred thousand people die each year as a result of their tobacco use.
Because nicotine is a highly addictive substance many users find it very difficult to give up smoking even after relatively short periods of use.
Tobacco can be bought legally by anyone over 18. It is illegal for anyone to sell tobacco products to people under 18.
There is a legal ban on Snus across the EU (with the exception of Scandinavia)
For more in depth information on this substance you can check out one of the worlds best drug websites: www.erowid.org