Your senses… they’re pretty remarkable. They shape your perspective, are home to your pleasure centers, and they are responsible for everything that involves delicious tastes, amazing aromas, and wondrous sounds. The thought of living without them, and having to navigate this crazy world without them sounds rather drab, does it not? Smoking is a great way to destroy them, and if you’re needing a good reason to shelf the smoke, here is a look at what smoke does to your senses, in particular, your senses of taste and smell. Because why compromise this amazing capacity we’ve been blessed with by nature?
Located in the rear of the nose are the olfactory nerves, and these transmit signals to the brain every time you inhale, allowing you to identify what you’re smelling. Traditional tobacco cigarettes dull these nerves over time, rendering them damaged, causing your ability to smell correctly and intensely to be hampered. In fact, according to the American Council on Science and Health, a frequent smoker is twice as likely to experience a reduced level of ability to smell correctly, than a nonsmoker.
The sense of smell is directly related to how one’s sense of taste works, however there are other ways taste is impacted by tobacco smoke. The sense of smell is affected by smoke in a physical manner, in which the tastebuds are actually flattened by the chemicals in smoke. In a study done in Greece where the tastebuds of smokers and nonsmokers were compared, and the tastebuds of smokers were found to be significantly flatter than those of the nonsmokers. The resulting effect causes one to not taste food as profoundly, with the sense of taste overall dulled to a drastic degree. What a shame!
The good part of all of this bad news is that smokers are able to regain their abilities to smell and taste correctly if they opt to switch to vapor cigarettes, which offer a similar experience without the chemicals and tobacco. Taste buds and olfactory nerves are actually known to regrow, as quickly as within a few days of quitting smoking (though individual results may vary, and can take up to a few months). The human body’s ability to evolve and heal is amazing, isn’t it?