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
Note: Separate PDQ summaries on Lung Cancer Screening; Small Cell Lung Cancer Treatment; Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer Treatment; and Cigarette Smoking: Health Risks and How to Quit are also available.
Who is at Risk?
Lung cancer risk is largely a function of older age combined with extensive cigarette smoking history. Lung cancer is more common in men than women and in those of lower socioeconomic status. Patterns of lung cancer according to demographic characteristics tend to be strongly...
Smoking doesn't really make stress, tension, or depression go away.
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.