Tire Spanish saw the Native Americans smoking tobacco for their religious ceremonies and quickly tested out the plant themselves. They were hooked. The nicotine gave the smoker a pleasant calming effect, but it was also quite addictive. Native Americans knew about this and while some of them were addicted to tobacco, for many it was only smoked as a part of religious ceremonies. Tobacco was usually used as a medicine. Scientists are investigating how to extract the numbing properties from tobacco for possible use in modern medicine. Native Americans also used tobacco poultices to help with insect stings and snakebites. Tobacco was used as toothpaste. Dried and ground into a powder, it was rubbed on the teeth for cleaning, and is still used as a method for teeth cleaning in India. Most cooks add sage to the dressing for their Thanksgiving turkey, lire Native Americans burned Tobacco was also used as toothpaste.