Many people equate smoking to stress release. They smoke in a stressful situation to cope with the stress. The question is does smoking help with stress release?

The answer is no and yes! What? I hear you say, how can that be so?

When you smoke the nicotine from your cigarette causes your blood vessels to constrict very fast. This causes two things:

  1. Your blood circulation is restricted.
  2. Your blood pressure shoots up.

It is estimated that when you smoke a cigarette your peripheral blood circulation is reduced by 60%. Since the cells in your body rely on the blood supply to get their nutrients this means that every time you smoke a cigarette the cells in your body do not get an adequate supply of nutrients. As a consequence they age and die faster!

People ask me, what can I do to cope with stress if I quit smoking cigarettes? There are many ways that can help and one way is deep breathing. This is a method that is central to yoga. My point is that there are better and easier ways of reducing stress than smoking a cigarette.

Stress. Woman stressed

Think about this, you have a set of pipes and suddenly to put water through them at a higher than normal pressure, chances are that if there are any weak pipes or joins the pipes will leak. When you smoke you subject your circulatory system to sudden and more than normal pressure. Result is a stroke.

Smoking can also help with stress but it is not the smoking that helps. It is the hand to mouth movement and the breathing. Smoking a cigarettes is the adult equivalent of sucking on a dummy. If you were to suck on a dummy you would have the same results in reducing stress as smoking. Sucking a dummy is not something you want to do as an adult so make sure that you have an alternative way to reduce stress when you quit smoking.

It makes sense to quit smoking. There are other methods to reduce stress, just google the subject and you will find hundreds of different ways. Stop smoking and use an alternative way to reduce stress, smoking does not reduce stress it is a myth.

About Steve Gardiner

Stephen Gardiner originates from Rhodesia, (Zimbabwe) then working around the globe before finally settling in Brisbane Australia. As a scientist, Steve always had an interest in human development, especially Mind Plastisicity and how we cope with stress, anxiety and addictive behaviours. Over the past 15 years Steve has assisted many clients to transform their lives by resolving the obstacles holding them back.

Entries by Steve Gardiner