There has been a lot of studies done on the harmful effects of smoking. So we understand this connection pretty well. Smoking obviously affects cell membranes and neuronal survival in the regions of the brain that control balance, coordination, and both fine and gross motor function. As a result, it thins the cortex, which is responsible for functions like language, memory, and perception, among other things.
Quitting now is crucial for your general health, as well as for your brain. However, a certain amount of damage is already done. Researchers discovered that quitting smoking can help restore some of the cortex’s lost thickness. But even heavy ex-smokers who haven’t smoked for more than 25 years have a smaller cortex than individuals who never smoked.