Ask yourself some questions to see whether you smoke to relieve
tension, irritability, and stress or to improve your mood.
Does smoking a cigarette automatically come to
mind when you are frustrated, angry, or sad?
Does smoking a
cigarette calm you when you are upset?
Do you smoke more cigarettes
when you are under stress?
If you tried to quit smoking in the
past, did you miss smoking cigarettes the most during times of stress?
The stress relief you get from smoking comes from the act of taking
time out to smoke a cigarette and from the chemical actions of nicotine in your
brain. If you return to the scene of the stressful event after you finish your
cigarette, it doesn't take long before the tension comes back and you need
Smoking is only a temporary solution for handling stress, tension, or depression.
The only way to truly control the stress in your life is to identify what
causes stress for you and learn how to change the way you react to stressful
events and situations.
For tips on how to better manage stress in your
life, see the topic Stress Management.
For more information on
coping with depression, see the topic Depression.
ByHealthwise Staff Primary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family Medicine Specialist Medical ReviewerJohn Hughes, MD - Psychiatry