Smoking and Stress

Stress is a big smoking trigger. Many smokers say smoking helps them manage their stress  - it makes them feel relaxed.

This feeling of relaxation is real. Your body gets used to a regular dose of nicotine and you end up feeling “on edge” without it. Smoking more relieves the stress caused by nicotine withdrawal.

Smoking also gives people a break. Many tobacco users find when they are stressed tobacco use gives them an excuse to take a break and remove themselves from the stressful situation.

The relief that you get from smoking only lasts a short time. It doesn’t solve what is causing you stress. 

Try to find some healthy ways to reduce your stress. Getting regular breaks will help.

Here are some other ways:

  • Take up a hobby
  • Exercise
  • Eat foods that are good for your body
  • Write in a journal
  • Take naps
  • Do yoga, meditation or deep breathing exercises
  • Get plenty of sleep
  • Drink a lot of water
  • Talk to someone about how you are feeling

When you quit smoking, try to avoid people or situations that make you feel stress. If you’re relaxed, you’ll have less of an urge to smoke.